Saddle Creek | Maria Taylor | Reviews


Lynn Teeter Flower

Author: Graham
04/26/2007 | | | Album Review
One of the first reviews I ever did for this website was for Maria Taylor's debut solo album, 11:11. It's been two years since our respective efforts and I think it's safe to say that we've both matured. On Lynn Teeter Flower, a record named for a family friend, Taylor succeeds in capturing her own sound, rather than borrowing from her past experiences. To this end, there is no denying that the music is a definitive reflection of the songstress, but that's not to say she didn't have help. Backing her are brother Macy Taylor on bass, sister Kate Taylor adding vocals and piano, a song co-written by Bright Eyes' Conor Oberst, and production by Spoon's Jim Eno, among others. Supported by friends and family alike, this is easily Taylor's strongest release to date, not just as an individual artist, but spanning her career as a whole.

Opening with the single "A Good Start," a song that wholeheartedly lives up to its name, the album takes on a blend of folk and synth rock to tell stories spanning from parable to personal. Though this full-band approach is present on most of the record, Taylor is at her best on Lynn Teeter Flower's acoustic tracks; as it is on these stripped down versions where her talents are most easily heard. Though slightly slow at times, the album as a whole creates memorable and meaningful tracks without ever bordering on the lines of pretension. One ill-fated exception, however, is the tune "Irish Goodbye," which boasts a guest vocalist performing a mid-song freestyle rap. Some would call this juxtaposed, others stupid, but it is undoubtedly strange for an indie rock record.

As many artist progress in their career's, their music often takes a turn for the worse as they struggle to maintain a style of playing which their fans are accustom to, while attempting to grow and expand on their former material. Lately it has been a rare commodity to have an artist successful in this rite, but like the red wine she so enjoys referring to, Maria Taylor gets better with age.

8.2 / 10
Lynn Teeter Flower

Lynn Teeter Flower

LP / CD / MP3