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Denali

Emma Hill

Kuskokwim 2014

Review by David Bowling

 

Not many musicians can claim the village of Sleetmute, Alaska, as their birth place but so it is with Emma Hill.  Now based based in Anchorage, the singer/songwriter is about to release her fifth album titled Denali.

Her sound comes down right in the middle of Americana and folk. Her lyrics have a connection to her Alaskan roots. Seek out her video for the title song “Denali” and you have an inspiring and in some ways mystical experience.

She has a wonderful and clear voice that is able to translate her gentle music and reflective lyrics well. Her main musical partner is guitarist/pedal steel/banjo player/vocalist Bryan Daste, with whom she has toured and recorded for a number of years. Their ability to create harmonies fills in the music plus Daste’s pedal steel gives many of the songs a plaintive sound.

Emma Hill is an artist connected to the land of her birth and her music reflects that relationship. Denali is a fine introduction to her sound and is worth a visit.

Rating: ***1/2

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