Tuesday, August 16, 2022

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Sound Check


Bonne FinkenBonne Finken

“Fairytales/Love Affairs”


I’m just going to say it: This is the best thing Bonne Finken has ever done. Originally planned as a double album (something teased in the split title), Finken condensed “Fairytails/Love Affairs” down to 14 tracks, and there’s not a song on the album that couldn’t take to the radio waves tomorrow. Taking a sideways step away from the more bluesy fare she’s become known for, Finken worked with three producers to put together an album that’s flashy, poppy and beautifully arranged. The album’s first three tracks — “Fall,” the Brandon Darner-produced “Absence of Fear” and “Step Back Baby” — manage to capture every bit of the passion and soul that are Finken’s hallmarks and present them in a way that people have perhaps never heard from her before. Finken’s got a ton of tricks up her sleeve, and they are all on display here. From emotionally crushing ballads to funk-infused dance numbers, “Fairytales/Love Affairs” is a creative, brilliant new look at one of Des Moines’ best talents. CV


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Roxi CoplandRoxi Copland

“Truth Be Told”


The undeniable fact is that Roxi Copland can sing. With the kind of ability that puts italics in your voice when you talk about it. Sing. And in that regard, “Truth Be Told” certainly puts its best foot forward from the outset: Opening track “Heavy Load” is the best track on the album. But it feels like we’ve been here before, and with good reason: Half the album’s tracks are reprised from Copland’s 2012 release, “Pretty Lies.” That former album was a solo acoustic release, while “Truth Be Told” features full band arrangements, but I’m not completely convinced that some barely-there guitar and a jazzy rhythm section are enough to shake the cobwebs of deja vu. And that’s a potential problem, because those four tracks are the best half of the album. CV

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