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Review of ANOTHER YEAR BLOOMS Ocracoke Observer, June 2007 By Kati Wharton I do not know how other people would go about preparing to write a CD review, but what I do is listen to the CD over and over, and then over and over again, and then...well, you get the idea. If I actually reviewed CDs for a living, and therefore had to listen to some bad ones, this strategy would probably cause insanity (my own, and that of the people in my immediate surroundings who have to listen along with me). Instead of being driven mad, however, I have been extraordinarily blessed by repeated listening to all of the CDs I have reviewed so far. That was (and still is) especially true of Another Year Blooms, the new release by Coyote, the singer/songwriter team of Marcy Brenner and Lou Castro, who have been playing together since 2001 and were married in 2003. The CD showcases Marcy and Lou?s remarkable range of talent for the entire musical process ? from composition and songwriting to playing multiple instruments, singing music of varied styles, and even to recording (Lou engineered the CD). Ten of the twelve tracks on Another Year Blooms are original songs by Coyote, whose songwriting is highly respected by other musicians (all of the original songs on their last release, Home to Me, reached the Top 10 in peer reviews). As Another Year Blooms shows, Marcy and Lou find inspiration for their songwriting from all aspects of their lives. The hauntingly lovely title track is about and for Marcy?s mother, who loved daffodils. My personal favorite tune, ?Richest Man in the World?, Coyote?s ?love song to Ocracoke Island?, was inspired by a statement a friend made, and the next track FIVE MINUTES came from what Lou said to Marcy while they were falling in love. FIZZY BLUE WATER has a highly unique source of inspiration, a modeling photograph from the 1940s, and also boasts one example of the lovely poetry of Coyote lyrics, the phrase ... even then a bottle could be a haunting shade of blue. What makes this CD wonderful is not, however, limited to the lyrics. It also includes an excellent instrumental piece (SUMMER SLEEPING PORCH) which shows off talent of Coyote on the dobro and guitar. Several of the tracks include their well-blended harmonies, and all of them offer examples of their wide range of skills on various instruments, including several types of guitars, mandolin, banjolin, piano and lap steel. Coyote is not limited to one style, evidenced by the wide variety of the songs on this CD, from the ballad-like MAKING PEACE TONIGHT, to the rocking IM ALL RIGHT to the zydeco DOWN THE DRIVEWAY HOME. Instead, Marcy and Lou bring their own style to every track. This makes Another Year Blooms delightfully unpredictable, and worthy of repeated listening. I especially like the cynical, jaded EVERYONE STARTS OUT IN LOVE, which is far from your average overdone sweet love song; its sudden ending is a perfect fit with the lyrics that say ... this could all end before its begun, but Ill worry about our future tomorrow?. Even the covers (THE STORMS ARE ON THE OCEAN by the Carter Family, and AT LAST, made famous by Etta James) demonstrate Coyotes style, as they perform them in a way that is uniquely their own, while not straying far from the original feel of the songs. Get a copy and listen to it - multiple times! (Try it at least once wearing headphones, as the left/right stereo effect adds to the experience.) If you want to hear more of Coyote, take in one of their performances, and look for them in the movie Nights in Rodanthe, out September 2008. Kati Wharton, Ocracoke Observer


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