Friday 14 September 2012

Review: Abby Posner – For You, The Spring

Abby Posner – For You, The Spring (Independent)
I suspect Abby Posner likes to keep busy. For a start there’s the teaching and the soundtracks for documentaries. Then there’s her folk-rock-bluegrass band, Fiddle And Pine, who gig regularly around her home state of California, and that’s just one of her many side-projects. Additionally she regularly performs solo, and accompanies other established artists, and, of course, she records and releases her own recordings. “The Gatherer and the Thief EP” came first in 2011, followed this year by “The Fall Sessions EP”, and her latest, “For You, The Spring”, which is available now as a download, and on 12th October 2012, as a CD.

Posner’s a fine singer with a voice that rings out clear and pure, or rootsy and country. She plays most of the instruments on her records, and she’s a first-rate string player, especially the banjo. She also studied world percussion at the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts), together with composition and songwriting. It certainly makes “For You, The Spring” an accomplished and interesting listening experience.

The ten short songs definitely don’t outstay their welcome. It’s all over in less than half an hour, but not a second is wasted and there are a remarkable variety of styles present. The title track, split into two parts, is both driving and gentle. “New Orleans” is energetic alt. country, “Criminal Mind” is moody folk-rock and “I Found My Way” is almost Joanna Newsom-esque, with Posner’s earthy banjo taking the part of the harp. Yet it all comes together perfectly. The production is simple and sympathetic, and the presentation authentic. Perhaps another couple of songs wouldn’t have gone amiss, and although that’s a criticism of sorts, it’s one I rarely get the opportunity to voice.
Simon M.

Abby Posner: The Gatherer and the Thief

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