“The Biggest Life” – Summer Dean (2023) [english]

Sometimes you need a time travel, to go back to when quality music came out of the speakers on the radio.

Sometimes we need to close our eyes and imagine ourselves in the 1950s, in the United States, when every dream was possible.

Here, listening to the Texan Summer Dean has this magical power, a power that relieves the burden of the soul of today and brings us all the beauty that those years carried inside.

Let’s be clear, she is not an artist who copies the past and leaves it there like in a window to gather dust. It updates, modernizes and enriches the stories that only the great Texan songwriters can tell.

Texas, if you follow me for a while, is often the protagonist of the articles I write: there music is a choice of life, indeed it is part of the life of most people.

Country is their way of telling the world and going to hear this live music is a catharsis, reliving their stories in those told by some artist is magical and healing.

Summer Dean at 40 decided that her job as a primary school teacher was tight, not the life she wanted. There was something else that attracted her like a magnet: music.

Then she took all his savings, those that should have been used to organize her wedding and in 2020 she produced his first album Bad Romantic and in one of the songs she also sang with the legendary Colter Wall, in short, not bad as a start.

A record that left a well recognizable mark in the world of Texas music, so much so that in 2023 she won the “Honky Tonk Female Artist of the Year” award at the Ameripolitan Awards.

There are voices that can tell with that warmth, that intensity that can not go unnoticed: here, the voice of Summer does not go unnoticed and when it crosses the ears of a genius like Bruce Robison (founder of the independent record label The Next Waltz) impress. They sure do do.

Robison is fascinated by the ability of this voice to accompany the listener in the past, but with a sound and character that does not smell of old or carbon copy.

This The Biggest Life comes with its 13 pieces and makes us travel with the author on the highways of the past, excites us with her true stories and takes our stomach and heart with that voice at the same time persuasive, confident and so vulnerable.

I don’t want to make comparisons that might seem risky or blasphemous, but listening to the first wonderful ballad Big Ol Truck I thought I had put on my turntable (if we want to travel in the past let’s do it well!, n.d.a.) a record by Tammy Wynette.

Not that it looks like a copy, but that character, that way of the voice to fascinate and move seems just what the former companion of the legendary George Jones did with her songs.

She Ain’t Me is past and present, it is a story that takes the heart and breaks it, but also tries to cure it.

The pedal-steel and the violin surround everything with melancholy and are the perfect completely of Summer’s voice.

The final solo is an ancient jewel, like the engagement ring of the grandmother found in a dusty box in the attic.

If you are looking for an artist who sounds honky tonk class and with a character that only top artists have, listen to Might Be Getting Over You and weep for joy. Simple, fun and exciting.

The expressive power of songs like The Biggest Life Worth Living Is The Small, are absolutely enriched by the winning choice to record the entire album in analog, without cold and useless digital interventions: everything sounds like you’re listening to Summer Dean in one of Texas’ legendary clubs or in a concert with Colter Wall or Charley Crockett.

Move Along Devil has an almost gothic pace with pedal-steel embroidering this melancholy and intense rhythm.

The voice of Dean is one of the best discoveries of these years and is added to the host of new country artists of absolute value and that will leave an indelible mark over the years.

Country life is always the protagonist of true country stories and the beautiful and moving Baling Wire, told and not sung, is a celebration of this life, acoustic and simple. No frills, no sophisticated arrangements: direct to the heart.

The album ends with an acoustic and poignant ballad, Lonely Girl’s Lament, in which the wonderful voice of Summer Dean accompanies you towards sunset with her human and true stories.

An album that had captured my interest already from the beautiful cover with represented a shelf full of memories and that listening to it confirms all the good that I had been told about this Texas woman with an unforgettable voice.

A journey through the stories of daily life, between love, joy, suffering and difficulty.

A simple and sincere journey, enriched by the presence of a band of pure talent and a brilliant production that leaves room for the character of the artist and that, choosing to record live, hits the target.

In fact, as Dean says, abandoning perfection, which she had always sought in her songs, to devote herself to emotions and stories, gives this album an aura of beauty and spontaneity typical of the greats.

Good listening,

Trex Willer by http://www.ticinonotizie.it

(in Ticino Notizie web site you can find original italian version of this article)

Pubblicato da Trex

Sono un blogger e scrittore appassionato di musica indipendente americana. Scrivo gialli polizieschi e ho inventato il personaggio del detective texano Cody Myers.

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