Dinah Thomas & The Five White Guys – 12

by Chuck Dauphin

When you list artists in your bio as influences ranging from Beethoven to Carole King to Chuck Berry, a listener should very well expect a diverse album. Needless to say, Dinah Thorpe does not let down in that aspect, as this disc is all over the place musically.

The Canadian artist begins the disc with the folk-ish sounds of “In The Country,” and continues with the down home stylings of “Song For Dolly.” (Of course, with a title like that, it would have to be down-home, don’t you think?) But, there’s a lot of musical ingredients that come into play here.

She channels a very dramatic sound on “Every Bit Hurts,” which sounds as if it could be used as a movie score, delivers a moody yet charismatic cover of Chris Isaak’s “Wicked Game,” and notches one of this album’s best performances with the warm and inviting “I’ll Have You.”

The album takes many twists in the road as it goes along. There’s a light and breezy sound to “What You And I Can Do,” and some biting social commentary on “G20” that works well, and a few cuts like “Face Down Splat Squirrel” that to quote another title are just plain “Weird,” but as an artist, one needs to explore all sides, and Thorpe does that quite well on this exquisite collection!

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