Bridget Rian - Talking To Ghosts
This is a debut 4-track release from a young artist, based in Nashville, who brings her talents to The Smoakstack studios and benefits from the uncluttered production of Paul Moak. Rian has a sweet vocal tone and she delivers a confident performance across these mid-tempo tracks that deal with emotional issues of the head and heart.
She plays acoustic guitar, in addition to vocal duties, and she is joined by local musicians, Ethan Luck (bass, guitar, lap steel), Caleb Crosby (drums, vibraphone), Kris Donegan (electric guitars, lap steel) and producer Paul Moak on piano, B3, mellotron, acoustic guitars and backing vocals.
The song arrangements are perfectly suited to Rians’ gentle delivery and opening track, Type Of Girl, speaks about female empowerment and being able to say “No,” when confronted with a delicate situation; ‘Maybe I’m stupid to think that you’re the one, When all the signs are telling me to get up and run.’
Pontiac Vibe is a song that recalls a car accident that the song writer came across one night, and the thoughts about who the driver was, have lingered with her; ‘Sitting at a green light with the doors open, A red Pontiac vibe from Michigan, Blue lights shining through the night, White sheet on the driver's side.’
Trailer Park Cemetery is a slow tempo song about wanting to be buried in a place of your own choosing; ‘I don’t want peace and quiet, It’s overrated anyway, I’ll take loud voices, Over silence any day, I don’t ask for much, Just wanna pick where my body lays.’ Interesting subject matter for a song. The music is excellent with strummed acoustic guitars and atmospheric lap steel giving the song added depth.
Final track, Funeral, is a regret at the passing of a close friend and missing the funeral. It’s a touching reflection on the helplessness of such situations and the pain that always lingers; ‘ I’ve been working all damn day, Praying that I won’t see your face, In strangers that pass by me, And in thoughts that won’t seem to fade.’
This lady can write a song, and no doubting the talent that is on display here. I thought of Kacey Musgraves and the fledgling start to her career. Like Kacey, Bridget Rian started writing her own songs at a young age (eleven years) and her NYC upbringing has given her the belief to take her talents down to Nashville in search of her dreams. I have a quiet feeling that we will be hearing much more from this undoubted talent and I wish her “Bonne Chance” in her ongoing development as a music artist.
Review by Paul McGee