Colleen Brown Foot In Heart

Colleen Brown Foot In Heart
This album was actually self-released in 2008, but Emm Gryner's Dead Daisy Records deserves kudos for not letting this gem get away, picking it up for re-release (CBC Radio has already taken to it). As clear and bracing as a sunny Albertan winter day, it marks the Edmonton-based singer-songwriter (previously best-known for her band the Secretaries) as a real contender. Her style is impossible to categorise. There's a real pop sensibility to some of her songs and vocals ― "Boyfriend" sounds like something Dusty Springfield might have sung in the '60s ― and the only cover is country hit "I Can't Make You Love Me." There's a definite Joni Mitchell feel to Brown's vocal phrasing and timbre on tracks like "Now That I've Found You" and "Pursuit," but Joni never sang songs as exuberant as "Love You Baby" or the aforementioned "Boyfriend," a song that deserves high pop radio rotation. There's a full production sound and fine instrumental work from Brown's band. Horns and strings are employed judiciously, for the most part (though a little overdone on "I Can't Make You Love Me"), never overshadowing Brown's impressively vigorous vocals. There are not many missteps here. (Dead Daisy)