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Anais Mitchell

  • Hymns For The Exiled

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    Anais Mitchell

    Related Artists - Ani Difranco, Mary Hampton, Jill Barber
    Related Genres - Country & Folk

    Hymns For The Exiled 8 ( 2004 )
    Before The Eyes Of Storytelling Girls / 1984 / Cosmic American / The Belly And The Beast / Orion / Mockingbird / I Wear Your Dress / Quecreek Flood / A Hymn For The Exiled / Two Kids / One Good Thing

    Imagine if you will a cross between Ani Difranco and Joanna Newsome. Anais Mitchell released 'Hymns For The Exiled' originally on Waterbug records in 2004. She attracted the attention of Ani Difranco and has wound up on Difranco's own 'Righteous Babe' records. Anais was quoted as saying at the time If you knew what Ani DiFranco meant to me as a young woman and a young songwriter well, I was simultaneously elated and in total disbelief. As well she might be. 'Hymns For The Exiled' was her 2nd solo release by the way, and thanks to Ani, we can now hear it in the UK. Actually, I can see why Ani Difranco was so impressed, this album is better than several of her own more recent efforts. There's that commitment, there's a personality shining through the songs and the album is simple - voice and guitar. The songs are intelligent lyrically and melodically interesting. A song like '1984' only lasts just shy of three minutes, yet there's enough there to utterly captivate you whilst it's playing. 'Cosmic American' is both a great title and song, what you might call a haunting ballad, I suppose. Well, it haunts the hell out of me, beautifully. This is a very strong record, albeit one that inevitably doesn't reinvent the singer/songwriter wheel. The title track for instance is another intelligent dose of lyrics, strummed guitar and her voice - it all sounds real, that's the good thing.

    'Quecreek Flood' is yet another stunner, real quality lyrics on display here and the acoustic guitar patterns are totally in key with the plaintive vocals and the story of the lyrics. The title track introduces gentle acoustic bass lines to join Anais and her guitar. It's another piece of class on an album that only falters ever so slightly with the final two songs not really being the 'ta-dah!' perhaps they needed to be to round out the album properly. As it is however, this is a record you will play and play again. With so much disposable music around, it's always great to come across a new, genuine talent.

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    this page last updated 21/06/08

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