Since her last album (Mile-High Rodeo) Miss Divine has progressed her music into a more electric setting to deliver some music she calls "swamp pop", an appealing blend of swamp rock, cajun, jazz-noir, roots and Americana. The songs, all bar one, written by Divine, show off her sultry, southern, satisfying voice. From the Attractions-like organ and trumpet that are central to the late night, off-kilter, mood of the title track through the more rock-headed Harder They Fall. That organ sound, very Vox Continental, crops up on a lot of the songs. Producers Glenn Patscha and Dirk Powell have given Divine a palate as colourful as it's fine illustrated sleeve. Muted tones totally appropriate for these songs and their intentions. Basin Bridge mixes Patscha's organ and Powell's accordion together with seamless ease. It's that kind of interaction of tone over the solid rhythm section of Christian Dugas drumming and Powell's bass that give these a robust base from where the songs fly. Divine has grown as a vocalist and turns in nuanced performances that are full of strength and resolve, as in Last One To Know where she is the subject of a broken relationship and delivers her hurt with the restrained reticence of being "the first one to find out but the last one to know". The 12 songs are divided into Side One and Side Two. The second set opens with Sunday Morning an uptempo take on that particular time of the week and what might occur after it. The bluesy tones of the trumpet filled contemplation of Either Way follows. Where Does A Little Tear Come From? is positively jaunty given the title. The only cover it was previously recorded by George Jones but it fits easily into this new soundscape. "There ain't A whole lot I can do without love" she declares on Taking Your Time and shows again that Johanna Divine is a good writer as she is a good singer. Son Ambulismo, a trumpet, guitar and organ instrumental closes the album with a musical swell that makes you want to swim again in the warm current of this electric tide.
This album is currently available at Johanna Divine gigs and will be released later in the year.