Picks and Pans Review: Fruit of Life
Scottish singer Angela McCluskey has a husky voice that's made her a star at L.A.'s hippest nightspots. The debut album by her folk-rock quartet is likely to expand her fame.
McCluskey's earthy vocals enhance her group's Celtic-tinged original tunes. She trades melodies with her musicians as if their instruments were voices. On "Rainbow," violinist Paul Cantelon plays a bluegrass version of a love theme from Bizet's Carmen. McCluskey cuts him off with a rollicking chorus about a victim of midlife crisis "who forgot the need to kiss."
McCluskey writes most of the lively lyrics, including "Philadelphia Story," which honors a lover who's as suave as Cary Grant. This singer's multiple talents create a rare commodity—an album that is entertaining from beginning to end. (Geffen)