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Don't Turn Your Back
Artist: Dale Ann Bradley
Label: Compass
Length: 12/36:31

Dale Ann Bradley is definitely more bluegrass than Americana, at least as shown on Don't Turn Your Back.  The title track is a tribute to the power of perseverance, and features Bradley's twangy vocals back by a bluegrass banjo intro.  "Rusty Old Halo" is as old school country pickin' and grinnin' as it gets, a track about those who just barely make it into Heaven.

When singing about traditional themes such as trains, family, and religion, Bradley hearkens back to the early days of country music. "Ghost Bound Train" almost portrays her as a female version of Chris Thile vocally, while "Will I Be Good Enough" spans a life from childhood to wedding, sounding much like LeAnn Rimes. 

"Blue Eyed Boy" hopes its protagonist is falling for the right man, and "He's the Last Thing On My Mind" indicates she may not have been.

Were I to change one thing here, it would be for Bradley to include more original or obscure tracks the cover versions of Fleetwood Mac's "Over My Head" and Tom Petty's "I Won't Back Down" don't fare nearly as well as expected.  Overall, it's a hit and miss effort.

Brian A. Smith
16 August 2009

 
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