Carolyn AlRoy is a practicing therapist, and her day job obviously inspires some of her lyrics. For example, on the pensive “My First Mistake” she laments, “My first mistake was to make myself small, so that you wouldn’t be jealous at all.” But don’t be scared away from this gem of a pop album, as there are happier moments and a variety of styles.
The acoustic “Italian Parsley” sports a jaunty, understated vibe, and “The Reality Song” would not be out of place in an old Western. The slow and meandering “Valentines Day” is distinguished by violin, cello and accordion. AlRoy is perhaps at her most poetic here, noting that “Silence hung between us like a golden thread.” The buoyant, pop radio-friendly “He’s Amazing” expresses the sheer joy and awe of falling in love (even if you’re not sure it’s the right person).
AlRoy is equally at home amid the heavy guitar of the edgy, punk-like “Sound of Revolution” and the violin and accordion on “Waiting for You to Be Born,” a mother-to-be’s sweet lullaby. The album closes with two covers. AlRoy’s almost whispered vocals on the Beatles classic “Helter Skelter” are slowed down to the point where the music is almost unrecognizable, changing your idea of the song immeasurably (in a good way). On the slow, country-tinged, plaintive standard “You Belong to Me,” she confirms what the listener already knows by the end of the disc: that she is a gifted musician who will not be pigeonholed to one style. I’m looking forward to her sophomore effort already.