Lisa Moscatiello

Innocent When You Dream

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Several years back, Luka Bloom released a fine album of covers, and Lisa Moscatiello follows in that tradition on Innocent When You Dream. Her sources, like Bloom's, are eclectic and varied, ranging from poet W.B. Yeats to Morrissey. The title track, in fact, is an old Tom Waits' song, and the album closes with Lucinda Williams' "Sidewalks of the City." While some might see interpretation as a derivative art, others argue that the very idea of the singer/songwriter (writing and performing one's own material) has always encompassed too much. Good interpretations, in fact, not only show the talent of a singer, but also serve to introduce lesser-known or forgotten songs. Moscatiello opens with a solid version of Fairport Convention's "Now Be Thankful," and delivers a chilling take of Janis Ian's "His Hands." The album gets a bit mellow in the middle, but picks up speed again on an electric version of "Driving Your Girlfriend Home." Moscatiello sounds a bit like Margo Timmins here, and does a nice of job of capturing the fragile beauty of this odd song. Occasionally Moscatiello misfires, as with her frantic take on the traditional "House Carpenter," reminding one of a rock band taking a request for a folk song. Overall, though, Innocent When You Dream is a rewarding effort, filled with thoughtful arrangements, soulful singing, and great songs.

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