Author: Darren C. Demaree
10/1/11 | Altohio.com | www.altohio.com | Record Review
Maria Taylor, through her different bands and solo projects, has been putting out albums for almost twenty years at this point. So, for this thirty-five year old Birmingham, Alabama native, so knows how this is done, and can be done well. On her most recent solo work, "Overlook", she delivers a very professional, well-crafted album, which certainly should be applauded.The highlight of the album for me was one of the shorter tracks "Happenstance". This song is exactly what Taylor does best. With sparse, direct lyrics, and her hauntingly beautiful voice she is able to tip toe around a lonely scene in Alabama. There aren't any tricks here, it's just a very lovely, delicate song that sort of washes over you, the same way Taylor appears to be washing over a longing for the West Coast in the song.The single "In a Bad Way", one of the more rockin' songs on the album, leans towards the saucier side of Taylor, is a really good song, and is one of the more complex tracks on the album. Some might argue that this track stands out too much to be included in the album, but I was happy to hear it be included because it adds a nice, extra dimension to it.Though, at times, this album seems to get lost on the way to a greater purpose, Taylor, who might best be known for her work with other people (Bright Eyes, Crooked Fingers, Joshua Radin, Moby) is more than capable to execute a solid solo work, with "Overlook" she shows just that.