Hotline to the Underground: Robin Lane – It’s Your World

The first of 16 compositions, “It’s Your World,” is a delightful story/song and grand opening for the Instant Album CD – (a disc that, according to the press release) “…has all sorts of songs that have not been on any albums save one. It also includes tunes Robin put together with lyrics from young girls she worked with at Camp Runoia in Maine. “

If you love “Tomorrow Never Knows” from the Beatles’ Revolver album, the sixth selection – “You’re So Special” – recreates the timeless sounds from the pop masters and goes a long way towards exhibiting the importance of this highly listenable project. That it came to us via the imagination of one of the most significant songwriter/singers in New England pop history makes it all the more endearing.

The approach on “You’re So Special” is very different from the first song on the cd – each track distinct and separate, perhaps a product of the fact that these essays traveled the years – from 1991 to 2012. However, you’d never know it as the music sounds so contemporary …as if it were recorded recently from start to finish. And as unique as each episode is, they work together in a cohesive, fun way. You can check the years out next to the songs on the lyric page online:

“City of Lights” proves that point. Patti Smith should be deeply envious of “City of Lights,” borrowing from Lou Reed’s “Heroin” riff and infusing Top 40 – ready-pop majesty into this beautiful excursion. It’s just too bad that Top 40 is something we dreamed a long time ago on a planet far, far away. It’s track two and the band is a fusion of Face to Face and Robin Lane and the Chartbusters. Powerful.

“Kitty Kat” from 1996 features Four Piece Suit, a jazz/pop selection that truly explains one of the directions that this album could have successfully gone to. “Something’s Wrong” feels like a full band, but it is Dave Doms on bass and Robin on guitar, recorded in Dom’s apartment in 1992. Think “Cowgirl in the Sand” after the fabulous sixties made their exit, thirty years on. Instant Album is a bountiful banquet of music that offers different perspectives and vibrations. “From A Goddess to a Doormat” with its simply elegant piano playing and voice, the segues perfectly placed though it would work just as well on shuffle. “Casey Bye Bye” is to Robin’s doggy and is a 1992 beautiful country-pop song. Instant Album is John Lennon’s Instant Karma in reverse. Lennon wanted to roll out of bed, record, press, and issue the record magically and as quickly as possible. He came out with a masterpiece. Lane took over two decades to come up with her instant classic. And it certainly is. See