Album: Gold And Rust
Lauren Shera’s third full length album “Gold and Rust” is an album of enjoyable sounds, good lyrics and interesting instrumentation. Especially the guitar work of Andy Zenczak who is also the producer demands recognition. The overall sound is full and deep and sparkling when it should sparkle, sometimes rocky and always somehow playful like e.g. in the second track, when a Mandolin keeps “commenting” and also an electric guitar as well as a lap steel guitar take part. In Hell’s Bells, the third track, the sound slowly builds up and is supplied with some distorted guitar sounds which might underline the pain and anger of a destroyed friendship that the song is about.
The next two tracks are beautiful homages to Shera’s home, California. In Sweetgrass the instrumentation turns nearly classical, with soft strings and brass sounds. I like this diversity very much. Stepheny and Afgbar is a beautiful duet with Matthew and the Atlas’ frontman Matthew Hegarty which is well worth listening to all on its own. His wobbly voice contrasts her clear and straight forward vocals nicely. The song Lila to me has the most captivating vibe and perfect pace – it just makes you sing and swing along.
But the song that speaks to me most is the beautiful final track, Evening. It’s the quietest song on the album, with an unobtrusive instrumentation and a very low pace. This is the song that displays Lauren Shera’s whole talent best – as a songwriter and singer that actually transports emotions and not just words with her singing. Again, it has a striking instrumentation with an intriguing contrast between her soft vocals and some distorted guitar sounds. In this song she seems to feel every note she sings more than in any other song of this whatsoever class album.