Discover New Music Vol. 2
Discover New Music Volume 2 is an excellent showcase of the talent of Blue Coast musicians. Featuring Meghan Andrews, Jenna Mammina, John R. Burr, Mick Overman, Michael Shay, and Fiona Joy Hawkins, the compilation captures a diverse yet cohesive range of styles and emotions. As always, the signature warmth and clarity of Cookie’s audiophile production elevates these artists, allowing room for their music to breathe in a natural and heartfelt way. This comes through clearly on Meghan Andrews’ cover of “When You Were Mine,” a tender take on Cyndi Lauper. Andrews’ clear and soft voice aptly brings the sadness behind the lyrics to the fore, especially when she sings, “I love you more than I did when you were mine.” The importance of quality sound recording is perhaps even more noticeable on the standout piece “Solstice Interlude” by Fiona Joy Hawkins, a melancholy piano meditation reminiscent of Harold Budd and Brian Eno’s “Ambient 2.” Here, Cookie’s masterful recording allows Hawkins’ performance to ebb and flow, to let chords hang on for what feels like an eternity, and to show the real natural beauty of a piano.
The jazzy pieces by Jenna Mammina offer a nice contrast, bringing an easy, swinging, Saturday night feeling. As always, Mammina naturally has excellent chemistry with whomever she performs with, as if they have worked together for years. Michael Shay and Mick Overman round out the compilation with impeccable country style. Shay’s “Abilene” is a slow country lullaby, full of lush vocal harmonies in contrast with the sharp accents of acoustic guitar twangs. Mick Overman’s rendition of “Time After Time,” is another heartfelt cover of Cyndi Lauper. Yet, while Meghan Andrews brought softness to her cover, Overman’s natural husky voice captures the raw emotion behind Cyndi Lauper’s masterpiece.