Michelle Krell’s Concrete Scrap Book
This isn’t the first night I’ll go to bed with Michelle Krell… soothing me through the headphones… singing smooth songs from her solid new CD, Concrete Scrap Book.
I doubt it will be my last.
From the first moment I heard “First Song” I felt a release – the kind you get when you’re hot and a breeze comes. Her music is like that – a welcome breeze. You’ll feel it when you get it, which I urge you to do.
An overview of the 10 songs unearths some concrete achievements: Michelle wrote all the lyrics, composed and arranged all the music, and sang on all tracks. Her voice is so easy to listen to it adds more to the welcome feel of the whole CD. A perfect blend of piano, a few guitars, appropriate percussion and, I believe I heard a Hammond or Wurlitzer organ, joined once by harmonica on “Sit and Watch the Moon” and once by cello in “Rainville,” allows the listener to breathe in the nuances of every song.
Michelle’s songs are loaded with neat lyric treats; like how she slips in the line, “”We don’t do paradise ” in a song by that title, or bending a rhyme to match “this” with “fixed” in “Perfect in the Picture. Some are stories well told like “Blue Cotton Dress” and “Concrete Scrapbook”. Others are instantly memorable for their strong hooks – especially in Rainville (my favorite), and the last song which drills in, “There may be two of us, but there’s only one of you.”
When I said I was taking this music to bed, I in no way intended to infer this CD was sleepy. Far from it. Ten tempos keep the toes-a-tappin’ plenty. Overall, it’s relaxing. “Rainville” comes in closest to the bed; but Leonard Cohen’s “Susanne?” Now that is sleepy! On the other hand, I could just as easily take Krell’s CD out for a walk, fill the house with it while I clean or dine, put it in the car for a meditative drive, or play it wherever I want to release the tensions of the world outside and enjoy the cool, comfortable contents of Michelle Krell’s “Concrete Scrap Book”.
Written August 30, 2011 by David Brunoehler