Sarah Lee Guthrie & Johnny Irion / Sarah Lee Guthrie / Johnny Irion

Entirely Live!

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Both Sarah Lee Guthrie and Johnny Irion are good songwriters and performers, and here, on Entirely Live!, their voices blend well. All of these parts, however, fail to make a satisfactory whole. First, the arrangements on four of the seven selections are stripped bare. While nothing is wrong with this per se, it becomes rather stagnate when songs like "Georgia Pines" and "Gervais" drag out for five minutes each. This is disappointing because Irion and Guthrie's voices really work well together. His vocals, high and similar to Neil Young's in flavor, and hers, country with a slight Emmylou Harris warble, manage to reflect one another well whether singing harmony or backup. Things don't really start to pick up on Entirely Live! until the fifth cut with "In a Young Girl's Mind." A slightly larger arrangement and some lively background vocals behind Guthrie's lead suddenly make this album come to life, and one wonders why they waited so long to bring out the support. The difference is the addition of Abe and Arlo Guthrie on guitar, harmonica, keyboards, and backup vocals, and by the time the band gets to track seven -- a great take on Woody Guthrie's "There'll Be No Church Tonight" -- it's really disappointing that it's all over. Entirely Live! is a mixed bag at best, but the last three tracks are quite worthy of Guthrie and Irion's talents.

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