Here we have yet another release demonstrating the coming of age of the EP format. In the 5-song So Easy, Haroula Rose succeeds her These Open Roads (here) with an in-betweener containing one drop dead killer cut—a gorgeously understated version of Glen Campbell's (actually Jimmy Webb's) Wichita Lineman—that will undoubtedly leave both Campbell and Webb stunned, as well as four very good other tracks. Like the last time out, Rose's approach to everything is gentle and melodious but this time a bit more folky-rootsy, the atmospheres primarily set by session guitarists.
Already Yours, however, is the cut most demonstrative of a gauzily psychedelic element coming more to the fore this time around, a state of milieu nicely layered by Sheldon Gomberg, the producer/mixer, and denoumented by the Twin Peaks-ish baritone guitar lines in the follower, Slow Dancing, Eric Heygood's pedal steel easing the vibe back on over to country roads not quite so opiated. On this one, Rose lands quite firmly in the territory of one of my all-time favorite mellow bands, Iain Matthews' old Matthews Southern Comfort, with a bit of Josh Rouse. The cut is second in magnitude only to Wichita Lineman, very nicely arranged.
What I think will interest Rose's audience most, aside from the luxurious sounds, is whether or not So Easy is to serve as a prelude to what will follow, that is: will it be incorporated in a coming full release, or stand on its own, apart from what came before and what follows? As I say, the EP form is coming much more sharply into its own but still needs a few matters decided upon, and discs like this will serve as mile markers by which such open questions are resolved.
Edited by: David N. Pyles
Copyright 2012, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
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