Karen Matheson

Time to Fall

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"Karen Matheson has a throat that is surely touched by God," says Sean Connery on Matheson's bio page. Her voice is a fine instrument, but on Time to Fall it is shrouded in hokey arrangements and over-produced gloss. Whomever is at fault, either the main producer of the record, Donald Shaw, or the various songwriters, it's surely the overall slickness and extremely flaccid arrangements that distract from Matheson's vocals and turn this record into a stinker. Among the best tunes here is "Ataireachd Ard (The Surge of the Sea)," but again the production is a bit much, a little too faux-spooky, like one of Sting's sillier numbers. Many of the English language tunes are especially uninspired, like "Moonchild," a downright awful song. The last number, "World Stood Still," is maybe the album's corniest. Matheson has superb pipes that are especially suited to Celtic music, but this album is closer to the Celine Dion spectrum of soul-less, lite muzak.

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