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'Ring of Truth' Review

!Hey Bo!


RIng of Truth New Jersey's Star Ledger turned in the first American review of 'The Ring of Truth' - read the review here (quoted from www.nj.com - all things Jersey!) or check out the original New Jersey Star Ledger review page for other reviews and information...

New Jersey Star Ledger, Sunday, September 15, 2002
"The Ring of Truth"
Carla Olson

This singer-songwriter-guitarist for more than two decades may not be a household name, but her list of achievements in the world of roots-rock and country-rock is impressive. She expands on that legacy here, getting a major boost from guitar ace and former Rolling Stone Mick Taylor.

An Austin native transplanted to Los Angeles, Olson's fetching if unadorned blond appearance doesn't hide her serious mission as a musician's musician. Olson came on the scene in the early'80s as a member of the Textones, a band that also included future Go-Go Kathy Valentine. She went on to record numerous solo albums and worked on collaborations that included two duet albums with the late Gene Clark of the Byrds.

On this chiming collection of roots- and blues-rock, Olson is the producer, co-wrote most of the songs, plays guitar and sings lead. Her resonant, husky voice shines on a slew of solid songs that might place her as a grittier, more sparsely produced Sheryl Crow, or a more rock-oriented Bonnie Raitt.

But it's Taylor's guitar work that steals the show. On everything from tight rock tunes to a 12-minute version of the Stones' "Winter," Taylor's sizzling, blues-based riffery lifts the record from good to very good and gives it a consistently exuberant, live-in-the studio feeling.

The record gets off to a heady start with the shimmering, hard-driving roots-rock of "Loserville" and "Never Fade Away." Then Olson branches out with the dramatic power balladry of "The Low Way" and the title song.

Yet the most irresistible track is a cover of an obscure 1960s Bob Dylan snarler, "Can You Please Crawl Out My Window." Between Olson's unexpectedly melodic but direct singing, Taylor's searing guitar work and Dylan's lyrical wizardry, it's hard to avoid playing this one over and over again.

Those who get a chance to hear this record will be grateful for that chance.

More From The Star-Ledger

...go to our 'Ring of Truth' Album page

All reviews:
New album: Have Harmony, Will Travel:
Top 100 C.B.   No Depression   Huffington Post   The Alternative Root   Flyinshoes   BealeStreet   TBD   TBD   TBD  

Gene Clark and Carla Olson: In Concert reviews: at Flagpole.com   at Folkwax   at Goldmine   at PopMatters  

other album reviews:
Blue Xmas   Ring of Truth   Hey Bo Diddley - A Tribute  
Detroit '85 and Too Hot For Snakes  

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