REVIEW: Jenny Reynolds’ “Any Kind of Angel” is Loaded With Musical Instinct

Reviews

Jenny Reynolds – Any Kind of Angel

Boston born Jenny Reynolds applies a finger-style guitar to her accessible tunes with convincing vocals. Sleek as the best old-school country female singers with silky voices & a touch of alt-folk early Sheryl Crow. She sculpts interesting tales/stories from her lyrics. No showboating, no extraordinary solos, just solidly constructed tunes with attractive lyrics & an indulgent musical flavor.

On her 4th LP Any Kind of Angel, (drops June 19 – Pretty Okay) Jenny weaves significant style on songs filled with sensible lyrics, melodies & drops of melancholy. There’s an old-school charm to her showcase, with her silky-smooth country imbued vocals that possess perspective with edge.

Her striking guitar crystal-clear is loaded with rhythmic musical instinct. “Any Kind of Angel,” is a perfect example of holding the right notes on the right words. Jenny’s in that special class occupied by the likes of under the radar folk-country-singers like Michigan’s excellent Carrie Newcomer, & New Zealand’s extraordinary Donna Dean (“What Am I Gonna Do?” & “Rain Fall on Me”).

“Any Kind of Angel,” is a poignant tune with Warren Hood fiddle to support the warm Jenny Reynolds vocal. Here Jenny (acoustic guitar) is supported by Jaimee Harris on harmonies, BettySoo (harmonies & accordion) & Mark Hallman (drums/bass).

Produced by musicians Mark Hallman & Andre Moran (electric guitar) — recorded in Austin. Other participants: Scrappy Jud Newcomb (electric & nylon-string guitar), BettySoo also mandolin, Oliver Steck (cornet), Jenifer Jackson (harmonies) & Nat Rowe (bass) – add subtle dynamics.

Some tunes are spare. Not produced with that firecracker incendiary type of showcase. The focus is strictly on music & message. Jenny suggests that musicians have room to respond to each other & listening closely — they do.

“The Way That You Tease,” a nice jazz-inflected song with Jenny’s decorous vocal adds emotion, edge & sultriness. Oliver’s terrific cornet is brief but tight. If Jenny’s career with Americana fizzles she’d be a superb respected jazz vocalist.

“Dance with Me,” has nice Spanish finger-picking. Jenny’s lyrics are concise. Her tone continues attractive, low to high maintaining color & freshness. A solid performance that never loses its vocalese. Never reaches or goes beyond her range. Balanced to perfection. This has nightclub coquetry. I could listen all night — obviously a first-rate original artist.

It’s rare I go from track to track & find each diversified with eloquence. “Trouble I’m In,” is a blues but wholly in a Jenny Reynolds mold. Her originality shines in a genre older than all of us. Seldom are Jenny’s songs dragging or lame. Each has direction even when they don’t drive hard. The cruise is enough to be uplifting. See children, the expertise here is you can be exciting without being loud. Jenny has this. Norah Jones has it.

Each track has varied flavors like Italian pastries & cookies. Does the music last in the minds of the audience once the house lights come on? If it’s Jenny Reynolds it beautifully will.

The delightful 40-minute, 10-track CD is available at https://www.jennyreynolds.com/

 

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