The life of the singer-songwriter can often be a lonely one. It can also be a very artistically hindering lifestyle, a plague that has conquered countless singer-songwriters of the past and will continue to conquer as long as time goes on. So how does one escape the trap that the solo artist often builds for their self? The answer is simply to add more people to your outfit. This is precisely what helped Whitney Peterson who added three members; Laurel Minnes on ukulele and vocal harmonies, Frank Di Tillio on upright bass and Jeff Luciani on drums. Together the band that are known collectively as Whitney Pea crafted their impressive new album All a Feeling, a beautiful blend of folky pop rock tunes.
All a Feeling is the band’s most fully realized effort to date and sees the percussion section fully fleshed out, as well as the addition of trumpet, pedal steel, pump organ and a Hammond B3. Fans of the band will notice how the songs on All a Feeling have much more dynamics than the songs on the band’s previous two releases, low fi fun and With a Heart Intending Forward.
Fans will likely also notice a different feeling given off by the music while listening to All a Feeling as the addition of the aforementioned instruments throws a little bit of light funk and rock jam out elements to some of the songs. However long time Whitney Pea fans needn’t worry as Peterson’s pretty and precise pop vocals still lend a sentimental familiarity to each of All a Feeling’s ten tunes.
The album opens with the faintly funky super folksy “Earth Wisdom.” It doesn’t stay that way for long as “Month of May” a bass and drum run pop song that features an overdubbed self-help tape-sounding sample. All a Feeling picks up on the reserved but still rocking “Grey” on which Peterson and Minnes harmonize in two of the sweetest sounding attempts at anger I’ve ever heard.
Later on “Lying” a funky and at turns slightly ‘70s disco-pop tune showcases the band’s diversity, as does the fun alt country styled rocker “Sigmond.” They change course once again on the New Orleans jazz infused “Less Lonely” where the sweetly strummed ukulele and trumpet duo carry a song that is wildly danceable and fun. All a Feeling closes quietly and sweetly with “The Keeper,” an acoustic duet between Peterson and Minnes.
Albums as wonderfully diverse as All a Feeling rarely come along from such young and unsigned bands, however Whitney Pea proves that it is possible.
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