Monday, May 19, 2008

The Kathleen Edwards' article

So this past Friday, May 16th, 2008, my article for Kathleen Edwards' latest release Asking For Flowers, was published in The News. I'll publish the full review here and make one thing clear: I would NEVER write or describe anything as "genuine gems". That's editing for ya.

Couple of things before the article. First, her official website is really quite lovely. Check out

I found a great photo shoot collection of KE on Flickr here.
Then I found what just may be Kathleen Edwards' own Flickr Site HERE.

This is the unedited, unprofessional version.

Artist: Kathleen Edwards
Album: Asking For Flowers
Label: MapleMusic Recordings
Rating: 8 out of 10

Kathleen Edwards is a musician with a flair for thrashing the monotony of modern-day, anesthetized country music. She’s young, she’s severely talented, and she’s the exact opposite of music’s mainstream. She’s proved herself for a third time with “Asking For Flowers”, a jagged country-alternative album laden with slide guitar, pedal steel, harmonica and piano, all christened by Edwards’ not so perfect but ever provocative voice.

Born only a blink of an eye ago in 1978 in Ottawa, yet Edwards is as confident and reflective as Lucinda Williams. Her radiant 2003 debut album “Failer” wildly transcended the country and folk genres like a bucking bronco. Five years on and still wise beyond her years, these eleven new songs are genuine; heavy with murky, poetic lyrics, all delivered hard with plaintive, true-grit intent.

In the studio she’s taken on co-producer role along with Jim Scott and extolled a pioneer posse of backing musicians. These include Keyboardist Benmont Tench (from Tom Petty’s Heartbreakers), pedal steel ace Greg Liesz (feature musician for Wilco, The Jayhawks and Lucinda Williams), Don Heffington (Bob Dylan’s lineage) and of course her husband, guitarist Colin Cripps, all contribute to this wonderful creation.

From the very first line on the very first track, Edwards establishes certain sentimentality as she wisps “The summer months left me alone/But the fall rolled in on the back of a storm”. With a pesky beat, “The Cheapest Key” is in second position; an alphabetized litany of complaints and objections to perhaps an old boyfriend. But the unquestionable stunner of the album is its unyielding coda, “Goodnight, California”, where Edwards has never sounded so good.

-Stephanie Kiernan, 5/16/08