The beauty of human expression lies in its ability to spring up anywhere. The dusty land of Somalia gave rise to a thrumming beat that roused hearts across the globe (the talented Maryam Mursal), and now, a woman brought up in a tiny cabin on Galiano Island, a small island in British Columbia, has come to inspire everyone with her sprightly banjo and her intimate voice. The woman, as she calls herself, is T. Nile (Tamara Nile). After her debut CD, 'At My Table' got favourable reviews, she spent three years touring across Canada, Alaska, and Germany singing songs of love, luck and life. Now she re-emerges with a seven-song EP and the promise of a full album in 2010; and a musical affair to look forward to.
Effortlessly playing the Banjo (the banjo!) and acoustic guitar in the title song, T.Nile punctuates her effervescent music with banjo beats, evoking rustic life ("dad would take me, into the forest; mushrooms and berries") and the heartbreak and joys of typical married life. On her website, you can catch a glimpse of the simple cabin T.Nile was born and brought up in -- a personal connection with the artist.
'Sunrises' is simply a pretty song, neither experimental nor groundbreaking - only managing to catch attention with the hypnotic sighs of the electronic music, although even this element has been used by both present day (Miranda Lee Richards) and older artists (Shania Twain). The lyrics might charm some while sound hackneyed to others - of rolling in fields, summers, swims and late afternoons.
My favourite song of the EP is the thumping 'Reverie', where the percussion shivers, and T.Nile soothes it down with her smoky voice. The song has interludes where the guitar and banjo duet in nice symphony. T.Nile comes across as a self-assured singer in the song. Reverie (Reprise) is equally good, just more atmosphere.
Lake Irene and Boats Against A Dock are songs of country life, Nashville, and the slow languid pace of life where even seasons change slowly. Rock Whatcha Got segues rock and folk into an effortless melody while T.Nile strongly modulates her voice to the changing music.
What most people say about T.Nile's music and I concur is that it is "warm"; it brings the listener into her world of forests and wide open spaces. Her blend of folk-rock, country, and brushes of electronica makes for an inviting sound. The EP is a charming effort and we look forward to the full album next year.
You can listen to songs of her EP here.
Or buy the EP at T Nile's official website.