Willison Roos – All These Years (Independent)
Willison Roos is Jenny Willison and Matt Roos. Both sing and play guitar. The pair are assisted by Charlie Burry on fiddle, Brian Palmer on bass and drummers Scott Learned and Tony Songer. They describe their sound as having ‘no rough edges’ but they retain a nice rootsy vibe to their music, which can probably be filed under folk-rock for ease of access. Their musical roots and influences differ slightly. Roos comes from a folk and jazz backround, while Willison has been compared to singers like Sheryl Crow, Emmylou Harris and Gillian Welch. The little things make life (and music) interesting, so they were always going to be a good match.
Harmony vocals are very much to the fore, and when combined with Burry’s sterling fiddle playing, their songs soar. In their hometown of Boise, Idaho, they’re making a name for themselves filling local venues. That’s no surprise. I’m sure they’d make a name for themselves wherever they were based. They’re too good to ignore. “All These Years” is their debut record, a dozen tracks long, it’s a powerful showcase for songs and performances. It includes their first writing collaborations, album opener “Flywheel” and the retro-fitted and faultless “Something Beautiful”, a song which brings to mind a folky Jefferson Airplane. Equally enjoyable are “Something in the Wind”, where Burry is on top form and the Willison’s epic, Celtic flavoured story-song, “Wildflower”.