I recently made contact with Amy Honey, and she sent me both of her CDs (Amy Honey, and Pioneer Woman)! Happy day! You see, the only track of hers I’d heard prior to this was on the Carolyn Mark ‘Just Married’ duets album, which is not nearly enough, although her records have always been on my Must Find list whenever I’m in record shops. Well, now I must search no more! She even sent l’il ol’ me a special ‘extra’ gift of a super-secret pocket patch with a bag of chai tea. Sweet! Haven’t had the tea yet, but when I do, I’m totally putting honey in it. Thanks to Amy’s hubby Andrew, too, for making this connection. Let’s all encourage Amy to make lots more records!
Folks, I have played both of these records with my Serious Music Reviewer Headphones on, giving them as close to the undivided attention they deserve as one can manage with a newborn in the house, and I am pleased to report that they are both Spectacular. Check it out:
Amy Honey – Amy Honey
From the moment her beautiful, clear voice comes soaring out of the rumble of a motorcycle engine that starts this record, Honey takes us through a collection of gorgeous, shuffling, yet very crisp country and bright pop. The arrangements are deceptively simple, the lyrics are wry and honest, and it’s all tasteful. Intermingled are fuzzed out-space tracks like Time Machine, a brilliant shout-out freak-out aptly named Sabbath, loopy synth lines pasted next to mandolin runs, and an occasional (and hilarious) deep voice interjection from someone calling themselves Cal Dick. Totally fun. And! Guests include Carolyn Mark, Tolan McNeil and Garth Johnson (they even get a slinky Welcome Home). Also! Stick around for the brilliant autobiographical hidden track too! Yeah baby, it’s all awesome. You’ve gotta have this. I love it!
Amy Honey – Pioneer Woman
Amy Honey’s second effort is a superb and essential record. Opening with a Walden-leaning track endears it to me from the get-go. Following that up with a funky ode to Farley Mowat and a title track that holds you close and then makes you headbang occasionally seals the deal. Honestly, this entire album is one excellent song after another. It’s a wide-eyed, unapologetic look at slices of life that few songwriters are capable of capturing with this level of accuracy and truth. Songs here veer from sweet country to unabashed pop to full-on rawk tracks, and it’s all great. Pioneer Woman has everything from touching acoustic guitar odes to full band rock-outs, all of it riveting. Lots of return guests here from the first record, as well as Diona Davies on fiddle, Honey’s hubby Andrew, Luther Wright and lots of others you probably know who kick up all this fantastic noise. Buy it, love it and tell all your friends. Go! Now!
Folks, I am thrilled to report that Amy Honey’s records are deserving of all praise, and will be played with great regularity in this house. Thanks again, Amy! Wahoo!