CD Reviews 

Wailin’ never sounded so good live 

Blending is the key element for the Canadian folk/roots band The Wailin’ Jennys. If you aren’t already familiar with the group, up front they are Nicky Mehta, Ruth Moody and Heather Masse. Blending is the key element for the Canadian folk/roots band The Wailin’ Jennys. If you aren’t already familiar with the group, up front they are Nicky Mehta, Ruth Moody and Heather Masse. Part of the blending is the obviously gorgeous harmonies. Yet just as important is the blending of the different musical backgrounds and interests that serve as a cornerstone to the music just as much if not more than the vocals.

The evidence of the qualities in the blend can be found on the new Red House release Live at the Mauch Chunk Opera House. The songs were recorded nearly a year ago in a venue that has been kind to folk, roots and country acts, all genres the group visits from time to time over these 14 songs. Fans who have snapped up their previous releases need not worry about too much duplication as eight of these songs aren’t available on any Jennys recording.

Virtually every song here is a masterpiece without a shred of filler. I especially enjoyed their take on Jane Siberry’s Calling All Angels and Emmylous Harris’ Deeper Well. Motherless Child and Driving are also both very strong offerings.

Hearing this live disc makes me yearn for two things. The first is that I wish I heard the disc Firecracker. The second is that the group wasn’t going to wait until 2010 to tour in support of the album. But the disc demonstrates that the wait will very likely be worth it. I just hope central Indiana doesn’t get left out of the tour plans.

Review used with permission of Country Standard Time http://www.countrystandardtime.com.