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KASEY CHAMBERS Dragonfly

KaseyChamber.Album

Kasey Chambers
Dragonfly
Essence/Warner

7.5/10

Kasey Chambers is no stranger to hit records, without ever having to pander to the formula of radio stations and record labels. With her quintessential Australian laid back character, Chambers as a person appears to be as popular as her songs. Dragonfly comes after three challenging years for Chambers and gives her plenty of experiences to mine from whether it be her much publicised divorce or the threat of career ending surgery to remove nodules and a cyst.

Dragonfly became a double album after the success of two recording sessions with different producers. The Foggy Mountain Sessions, were recorded with her brother and long time collaborator Nash Chambers. The second of the sessions were recorded at Sing Sing studios with Chambers’ mentor and friend Paul Kelly at the helm. It was the success of these Kelly recordings that pushed the album into two disc territory.

Not only is this her most expansive collection, it is Chambers’ most broad as well. Ain’t No Little Girl was the bluesy teaser to the album that signalled that this version of Kasey Chambers was to be no pushover. The surgery has added extra grit to the already earthy Chambers voice, but there is still scope for sweetness to shine through on Satellite (with Ed Sheeran harmonies thrown in for good measure).

Chambers’ trademark sense of humour is on show during the Dylan-like spoken word Talkin’ Baby Blues. The candid tune finds Chambers talking of her children’s two fathers while noting “one’s better looking, the other one’s smarter,” before sharing the tale of her dalliance with the much younger Harry Hookey. More that just a footnote in a song, Hookey co-writes eight of the songs on Dragonfly, while Chambers is joined throughout by performances from Paul Kelly, Keith Urban, Ed Sheeran and Foy Vance.

Chambers has given a little something for everyone on this record whether it be some straight up country, swampy stomps, Nashville style pop or bluesy swagger, yet most importantly sounds like she is having the most fun out of everyone. Dragonfly may not deliver the hits of the past, but it is consistently stellar from go to whoa.

CHRIS HAVERCROFT

 

 

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