The third full-length release from Chris Pureka covers a recording career that spans back to 2001 if you include her first disc, a 7 track self-titled e.p. including the song “Afterall”, which also appeared on the Driving North CD, the 2004 “debut”. Dryland appeared in October of 2006 leaving a space of three and a half years before this wonderful new outing entitled How I Learned To See In The Dark.
The singing – and playing – is as methodical as the length of time between albums, a pensive “Song For November” precedes the modern-day-Dylan action of “Lowlands”. With that wonderful granny voice that Marianne Faithful and Melanie Safka utilized to good effect Pureka takes “Time Is The Anchor” to its own unique place, moody and wonderful, pictures are painted within both the sounds and the words she drops onto this canvas. For such a tremendous package of sound one can never figure out why the artist would issue 12 page dark booklet which Stevie Wonder could have an easier time attempting to read. It makes no sense because the music is magical, the feel of the packaging classy and here’s a dozen pages that look like they were dropped in black ink.
The Los Bravos sang “Black is Black” but this typeset is black on black! And speaking of covers, the music is so heavy that maybe an uptempo classic like that Top 5 UK/U.S. hit by a band from Madrid, Los Bravos, (rumored to feature Jimmy Page on lead guitar) would be a nice break for the listener because as heady as this CD is, the dozen tracks contain a lot of material to absorb in one sitting. With the E.P. coming back into vogue in 2010, the issuing of so much music is ambitious and possibly counterproductive. It’s overwhelmingly great, but so much good stuff that it all can get lost in the shuffle without a breakthrough “hit”.
Chris Purek performs “Burning Bridges” from her first record, Driving North.
The New England artist starts off her tour in Portland, Maine on April 8th and is at The Middle East, Cambridge, April 9th with a stop at The Iron Horse in Northampton, April 10 and The Music Hall of Williambsburg on Monday, April 12th.