Katrin Roush, otherwise known just as Katrin, is a rock singer on the mellow side who has atracted quite a few top pro's in admiration of her work, people like Jarry Marotta, who's played with damn near half the rockers on Earth; Tony Levin, who's played with even more and a lotta jazzbos besides; Bill Dillon (Sheryl Crow, King Crimson, Paul McCartney, etc.); and even John Sebastian (Lovin' Spoonful), popping in for a bit of guitar and harmonica in Dreams (which opens with Born Under a Bad Sign 's main riff). From a start as a busker in the streets of Boston, she's developed a smooth and flowing singing voice that at times is reminiscent of Katrina (& the Wave), Carole King, mannered wailers, Laura Nyro, and a number of others but is fairly distinctive on her own.
Marotta's production is smooth and flawless, making the disc a great candidate for mainstream exposure, but that's also a part of its problem: it's a little too flawless and tends to have neither highs nor lows, narrowbanding, though the energy is quite nice. More is probably the prime cut of the selection, a track that takes on a slightly more progressive slant (hey, there are members of King Crimson and Peter Gabriel's band throughout the CD!), allowing Katrin to cut loose, shaking up the relative placidity of the disc. Were there more of that, this would be a much different release…and a much different review. As is, though, Frail to Fearless is pretty, soulful to a certain degree, and, as noted, mannered but needs to re-think its premises. And the lyrics could use a bit more depth as well.
Edited by: David N. Pyles
Copyright 2012, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
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