Carbon Leaf,
Ether-Electrified Porch Music
(Constant Ivy, 1999)

Ether-Electrified Porch Music is the third CD for Virginia-based band Carbon Leaf. The quintet brings together a variety of traditional and modern instruments and a rocking beat. The band is Barry Privett (vocals, tin whistle, harmonica), Terry Clark (vocals, guitars, theramin), Carter Gravatt (vocals, guitars, mandolin, lap steel, banjo), Scott Milstead (drums, percussion) and Jordan Medas (vocals, bass). Privett is their lyricist.

Standout songs on this CD include "For Your Violin," a folky song about the building of a legendary violin. "Nowadays," a song about time passing, is quiet and more or less introspective during the verses, with a slightly more enthusiastic refrain. "Clannanhide" talks about how we hide our true selves from the rest of the world.

Though I must confess that many of the lyrics don't make much sense to me -- and half the time, if I don't have them in front of me, I can't make them out anyway; it doesn't matter who is singing them! -- the music of this talented band more than makes up for it. Bouncy, fun, the beat demands to be moved to. I would like to see them live sometime, because I'm sure their onstage energy is much higher than could ever be captured by CD.

[ by Laurie Thayer ]
Rambles: 26 October 2002

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