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Loralyn Coles - Blue Moonlight

Blue Moonlight

Loralyn Coles

Available from CD Baby.

A review written for the Folk & Acoustic Music Exchange
by Mark S. Tucker
(progdawg@hotmail.com).

Loralyn Coles has a very feminine enfolding voice (yeah, I know, now I'm gonna get a spate of letters from aggro feminists accusing me of sexism) in gently delicate sonic fields drawn from folk traditions, New Age, and film musics (Northern Lights is a Civil War ballad that would go well in an anti-war flick). There's also a generous slice of Celtica, especially in Robert Spates' lyrical violin, Coles accompanying in a high sweet register; her drawn-out notes in, for instance, Golden Songs / The Water is Wide give the listener goosebumps.

Blue Moonlight is indeed a gentle record, a set of lullabyes lovingly rendered, the kind of music that heals as it brings a tear to the eye...and perfect to fall asleep to, laved in slowly undulating waves of lush semi-orchestral miniatures. Her take on 9/11 is interestingly neutral, not political to the least degree, only desirous of curing the trauma. Every once in a while, Coles is about a quarter tone off her intended pitch but otherwise has a Judy Collins-esque voice, a bit more melismatic than Suite Judy, a flow of soothing reassurance.

There are plenty of country fragrances floating through the songbook here (again, Spates is a hugely irreplaceable element in the atmospherics) but this is definitely lullabye-centered and Impressionistic (think Ravel and Debussy, maybe Faure, with spices of Gershwin blended in) via the crib, manger, and romantic tenderness. Goes a goodly ways to drag New Agery back into a proper art.

Track List:

  • Sultry Ways
  • Northern Lights
  • Golden Songs / The Water is Wide (traditonal)
  • Fallen Tears
  • Paper Angels
  • Long Distance Train
  • Once in a Blue Moonlight
  • Gypsy Star
  • Lark in the Morning, Wild Geese at Night
  • Offer Me a Sip
  • Children of Summer
Except as noted, as far as I can tell, all songs written by Loralyn Coles (no credits are given).

Edited by: David N. Pyles
(dnpyles@acousticmusic.com)

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Copyright 2009, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
This review may be reprinted with prior permission and attribution.
 

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