The Sonora Pine

Sonora Pine II

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The continuing growth of Tara Jane O'Neil's songwriting is evident on Sonora Pine II, the trio's second offering to the masses. The graceful sounds of intricate guitars, violin, and organ weave through the disc's seven songs, lulling the listener into a mood of thoughtful deliberation. Samara Lubelski's violin on "Long Ago Boy" sets an eerie precedent and O'Neil's slow, relaxed vocals tie all of the song's loose ends eloquently together. Nora Christensen steps in on accordion on "Weak Kneed" and "Baby Come Home," adding a new sound to the group's already solid approach. Kevin Coultas finally steps from behind the drums to play guitar on the disc's final track, the simple yet convoluted "Linda Jo." Noel Brather also guests on cello on the track. The band's gentle and deliberate approach to this album works remarkably well, having given up some of the rock tendencies found on their debut. Subtlety and melancholia are central themes on Sonora Pine II. The trio recorded the album with Kevin Coultas in their hometown of Louisville, KY, in late 1996 and early 1997. Chicago's Quarterstick Records released the disc later in 1997.

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