Lily Holbrook

Running From the Sky

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    6
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AllMusic Review by

Although having performed for several years in coffeehouses and street corners, Lily Holbrook sounds like she's far away from the audible butterflies heard on many debut efforts. Dedicated to Christopher Holbrook, a deceased brother, the record has a distinct and audible sense of innocence and naïveté to it. Consisting of a range that calls to mind Jewel if she began her career doing musicals, Holbrook wastes little time showing her talents on "The Snow." With a quasi-orchestral sound, the track is melancholic but has a certain beauty to it. This is fully developed in "Mermaids," a song that has more of a pop slant to it in the vein of Lisa Loeb and Aimee Mann. The arrangements emit a fairy tale atmosphere in some instances, but at times they are a bit too polished and over-produced. "Spaceship" showcases more of Holbrook, as she shines on this folk-pop tune. The string section is brief but closely resembles "Eleanor Rigby" by the Beatles. "I see a spaceship passing by and I wonder," she sings with childlike awe. Unfortunately, the dark and Celtic-like brooding on "My Little Diary" doesn't work as well as expected; there is a lack of flow or direction to it. The core of the album rests on a lovely and lengthy ballad called "Slipping." With just a guitar and some sparse instrumentation, Holbrook does a wonderful job of making a nearly seven-minute song seem so effortless and so fluid. "Another Winter" continues along the same path, but doesn't have the same intensity to it. "Dandelion" is another lengthy song rounding out the album that has a certain flare to it. Unfortunately, the lyrical portion ends less than three minutes in, resulting in a lengthy cacophony of repetitive lyrics and different studio effects in the vein of the Beatles. Scott Keneally's didgeridu is the song's only saving grace. A poignant closing is a bit of homemade tape, perhaps featuring Holbrook and her brother when they were children. This album would and should make both siblings proud.

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