Roxanne Potvin All It Was

Roxanne Potvin All It Was
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The multi-faceted talents of singer-songwriter and guitarist Roxanne Potvin have been on display since her bluesy 2003 debut, Careless Loving, 2006's Juno-nominated The Way I Feel, and the superb (if underrated) 2008 album No Love For The Poisonous. She has drawn upon soul, blues, pop and folk styles, and this musical eclecticism may have hindered her career somewhat.
 
This EP confirms her as a formidable force, however. Potvin remains reluctant to pin herself down, genre-wise, covering more stylistic ground on these five songs that most artists traverse over multiple full albums. There is not a false move here, with each track standing alone as a subtly-crafted gem.
 
Though the musical motifs are varied, there is a consistently warm and often steamy feel to proceedings here. The opening title track begins in hushed and haunting fashion, then gradually grows into experimental psych-folk that complements evocative images of sheltering evergreens and frozen ocean banks. Potvin lights a torch on "I Know It's Good," proving she can deliver sizzling and sensual Southern soul, while the retro tropicalia feel of "Lonely Island" also traces a lustful encounter — "the burning kisses left their mark."
 
The seasonally appropriate "Last Days of Summer" sets a sweet mood featuring screaming kids, hazy days and chocolate ice creams as "in the rearview mirror we watch the city streets burn." As with other cuts here, the tune features intriguing musical touches, with the caressing guitar of Christine Bougie adding to the warmth. The EP closes out with "Nuit Électrique," a tune Francoise Hardy would be happy to claim. Lovely stuff. (Comino)