Holly Golightly

Painted On

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Golightly's 1997 album happily kept her own playful vibe going just as it should, combining home and Toerag Studio recordings into another stew of bluesy garage rock and R&B sass. Assisted by her usual crew of backing musicians, like drummer Bruce Brand and guitarist Dan Melchoir (not to mention Baine Watson as "the hick"), Golightly assays originals for the most part, kicking off with the well-groovy "Run Cold." There's one great cover, though: Hattie Hart's old Memphis blues classic "I Let My Daddy Do That," with just Golightly and Melchoir on the track, coming with an appropriately recorded on the porch in 1920 vibe. Most of the album has a distinct midcentury vibe, blending styles and arrangements to sound like a bit of never-never land Americana. The title track is a definite winner, caught somewhere between a slow, rockabilly ballad, cool dismissive '60s pop/psych and Golightly's own particular vibe. Concluding number "Anyway You Like It" is another good listen; both a touch wistful and sharp, its slow pace and harp from George Sueref wrapping things up with a bit of gentle melancholy. Handling production and keeping everything sounding just the way she wants, Golightly comes up with some fun and atmospheric touches, like her self-duet on "Indeed You Do," switching between direct mic singing and from-one-room-over compression. Individual kudos: Brand's swinging drums on the romantic warning sign "A Length of Pipe," Melchoir's own songwriting contribution to the album, Mat Radford's "whistlin'" on the agreeably twangy "One Kiss," and the group instrumental "Snake Eyed," with fine slide guitar from Ed Deegan.

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