Tift Merritt "Another Country"

Thursday, February 28, 2008

First and foremost, Tift Merritt deserves much more notice than she receives, with her third album release “Another Country” makes three reasons why. Merritt’s debut Bramble Rose earned spots on both Time Magazine and the New Yorker’s year-end Top Ten lists. Tambourine, her sophomore album, was Grammy nominated for Country Album of the Year. The third release is at the same caliber, and higher. Merritt’s music is something to get excited about.

First and foremost, Merritt is a songwriter. Actually, that doesn’t do it justice; how about an “incredible songwriter”. Second, a singer; again that doesn’t come close to describing her work either. Fusing Merritt’s own writings and her vocals into a song creates an intense passionate vocal delivery filled with a sweet, slightly sensual, and emotional expression.

“Another Country” takes the listener into Merritt’s beautiful and relaxed world. The lead track “Something to Me” showcases her talent and distinct, yet not odd, sound. A blend of rock, folk, and country music Merritt delivers a very enjoyable listen. “Broken” also really catches my attention in showcasing her talents, yet each and every track is a wonderful musical journey from start to end. It is too hard to single out one track as the best or worst of the album.

The lyrics you hear on each song makes you want to seek the lyrics and start right away to deeply understand them. Such deep thoughts in these lyrics as they tell personal stories and thoughts are encountered in each line that sparks deep interest in this album.

You will find yourself becoming one with yourself and the music, becoming lost, giving the music your undivided attention. Not many albums have that ability.

The album concludes with “Mille Tendresses” sung in French (with the translation included in the album notes) which is an appropriate conclusion on the album for the reason that Merritt spent some time away in Paris recently in which the songs found on the album are from her notes and thoughts from the hiatuses.

This album is made for the intense music lover, not an album that you just mindlessly listen to, no, not at all. This album deserves your full attention and just may let you, for a few moments in our busy lives, to travel to “Another Country” in your mind.