The Wailin’ Jennys. Bright Morning Stars.

Canadian sirens The Wailin’ Jennys are a publicist’s delight. Attractive, talented, perfect for tasteful radio play, winners of numerous awards, it seems they can do no wrong. On this, their fifth release and the first for True North Records they maintain the qualities that have so far helped them remain leaders in the field. Blabber’n’Smoke was lucky enough to see them in St. Andrews In the Square a few years ago and can testify to the enchanting lure of their voices.
On Bright Morning Stars their vocals remain the primary feature. Each of the trio ( Ruth Moody, Nicky Mehta and Heather Masse) take ownership of the songs they have written with the others adding sublime harmonies. They are supported by a very sympathetic band in an atmospheric setting that recalls Daniel Lanois’ trademark sound (the album was co-produced by Mark Howard and Dave Travers-Smith). The result is an intimate snugfest, perfect for relaxing while wallowing in the soft comforting pillows of sound. Although the Jennys provide one acapella song (the title track) and sing Asleep At Last accompanied only by acoustic guitars the beauty here is in the arrangements and playing. Much of this is down to the excellent and various guitar players who adorn many of the songs in a manner that is ever so slightly reminiscent of the intricacies of Bert Jansch and John Renbourne duetting. This is heard to best effect on All The Stars and What has Been Done. The one drawback here is Cherry Blossom Love, a fine song delivered well but its retro swing feel puts it slightly at odds with the rest of the album.

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