Album Review: The Living And The Dead by Jolie Holland
Very Good, Based on 3 Critics
AllMusic - 80 Based on rating 8/10
On her three previous offerings, Jolie Holland mined the deep well of Americana, from classic pre-war blues and country sources to the feel of speakeasy-era popular and parlor songs through originals that echoed all of the above while being caught in the whirlwind restlessness of millennium-edge America. Her songs and instrumentation were like lovers; they represented the iconic places they held in her life as an artist. The Living and the Dead offers a different side of Holland.
Holland enjoys herself on fourth albumJolie Holland writes songs packed like retablos with autobiographical details and Dia de los Muertos figures, but it’s her voice that animates them. She slurs her words and blurs her phrasing, chewing her consonants and creating a distinctively drunken drawl. Holland’s fourth—and perhaps best—album (featuring contributions from collaborator M.
Jolie Holland may be from Texas and singing about Mexico City on her fourth - and best - solo album, but she made her name in Vancouver as a founding member of the Be Good Tanyas. Though she's back in the States, the rootsy singer/songwriter still retains some of that understated Canadian charm. Her new disc is a sweet, infectious collection of alt-country that tackles broken hearts (Palmyra) and Jack Kerouac (Mexico City).