English Rose Shows The Nashville Gals How It’s Done!
Sometimes I receive albums too early; which was nearly the case here as Mockingbird Lane arrived in mid August amid a glut of other albums. Knowing it wasn’t released until late October it kept getting put to the bottom of the pile and because the cover art made me presume it was a Folk record I was in no hurry to listen to it.
The opening guitar break on Long Way Home instantly caught my attention and then when Danni’s sultry voice slid in I was entranced. Like everything else here it’s a result of some excellent songwriting partnerships between Nichols and some American heavyweights and shows what a dynamic storyteller the young lady from Bedfordshire is.
Thankfully that high standard remains for pretty much the whole album, with the gentle Look Up at the Moon and Beautifully Broken hinting at a rising star in the making.
The album was recorded in Nashville, and Danni shows her love of Americana on the atmospheric Back to Memphis and the nod to Bluegrass Leaving Tennessee both of which could easily fit into albums by stars that win CMA Awards.
This is Danni Nichols second album and she’s managed to accrue some pretty impressive friends along the way with Will Kimbrough adding his trademark guitar licks to Where The Blue Train Goes and Brandy Zdan adding background vocals on three tracks.
As you’d expect a lot of thought has gone into the syncing of the tracks and the last two will have you begging for more.
The penultimate track Sad Swan will melt your heart from start to finish and album closer Travellin’ Man just may be a case of keeping the best until last! The most ‘Country’ song here is real toe-tapper with a chorus of “I am trading in my dreams for Dollar bills” and at last Danni finally shows us what her lovely voice is capable of.
Don’t make the mistake I made by judging this album on the artwork alone; hunt it down, as I’m pretty sure you will enjoy it like I did.
Released 23rd October 2015