Release Date: Jun 21, 2005
Record label: Matador
Genre(s): Indie, Country, Singer-Songwriter
Laura Cantrell knows and loves good music too well to be a purist, and while her first two albums, Not the Tremblin' Kind and When the Roses Bloom Again, were firmly grounded in her great fondness for country music, she expands her boundaries a bit on her third set (and first for Matador), Humming by the Flowered Vine. While the feel of Humming by the Flowered Vine isn't radically different than her previous work, the sound and arrangements offer some new wrinkles, with producer J.D. Foster and a superb cast of musicians edging Cantrell into an inventive pop direction.
Laura Cantrell was raised in Nashville but transplanted herself to New York to attend college. Consequently her music reflects this country-girl-in-the-city dichotomy, nowhere more explicitly than in Khaki & Corduroy, where her thoughts drift back to her arrival in New York in the mid-1980s. The song's mood of faintly twee nostalgia is typical of the whole album, which brings together a selection of Cantrell originals alongside covers of vintage and contemporary material.
Don’t be fooled by the Matador logo: there’s very little “alt” in Laura Cantrell’s country. Her first two albums, released on Brooklyn indie Diesel Only, were accessible, amiable collections of uptempo country-rock, more stripped-down than today’s Nashville schlock but firmly rooted in tradition. Humming By the Flowered Vine, Cantrell’s first effort for Matador, sees some changes in style, but sticks with the audience-friendly approach of its predecessors.