Too good to stay local
Reviewed August 2009
San Diego singer-songwriter Lindsey Yung stands out in a crowded acoustic scene in the area for several reasons, all good and all present on her new CD.
By Lindsey Yung
To hear sound clips or learn more about this release, Turbula recommends viewing its Amazon.com entry.
Playing keyboards rather than guitar gives her a different sound than most of the county's folk singers. (And, no, the keyboard is not
acoustic, but her near-constant presence in local coffee houses and at open mic nights have made her a treasured member of the local acoustic scene.) Adding to her distinctive sound is her crystalline voice, reminding of early Kate Bush or Jane Siberry.
But what really sets her apart is her songwriting. While most singer-songwriters hew to a folk sensibility, Yung has always been
closer to the art rock school and "Opal Essence" moves even further in that direction than her previous disc, "Fusion." Her songwriting also shows improvement along with the stylistic movement; "Touchstone" is an alluring, hypnotic art rock piece, anchored by Yung's haunting vocals. "Scent of
Summer" is a cute little love song with clever word play in the lyrics, and "It Doesn't Get Better Than This" is a catchy,
Hawaiian-tinged ode to domestic bliss.
While she employs a "wall of sound" approach to the song arrangements and production on the new album, it's done so well that it never
sounds anything other than organic. Whether it's a bass line coming in atop her vocal mid-refrain or a slowly growing crescendo on keyboards, it all adds up to work brilliantly.
Review by Jim Trageser. Jim is a writer and editor living in Escondido, Calif., and was a contributor to the "Grove Press Guide to Blues on CD" (1993) and "The Routledge Encyclopedia of the Blues" (2005).