The Opposite Only Better
First Appeared at The Music Box, April 2001, Volume 9, #4
Written by T.J. Simon
Colleen Coadic is an acoustic pop/folk singer-songwriter based in Anchorage, Alaska, who evokes the sounds of Ani DiFranco, Edie Brickell, Ricki Lee Jones, and Suzanne Vega. She has been performing professionally since the age of 17 and has released four do-it-yourself CDs, the latest being the sweet sounding The Opposite Only Better.
At her absolute best, Coadic draws upon the influences of 1980s jangle-pop girl groups, as on the album’s strongest track This Late Night. This Go-Gos-inspired tune begins with the dialing of a touch-tone phone that is later woven into the upbeat rhythm of the song’s space-laden bridge. Beige is another homage to Belinda Carlisle’s band, and the final number, aptly titled The End, has the distinct feel of a song that easily could have been recorded by The Bangles in the band’s prime.
Coadic’s songwriting skills show an immense maturity and understanding that pop hooks and intense self-expression can fit together like the pieces of a puzzle. Her lyrics are pure poetry as in Driven, a folk song for the new millennium with harmonized vocal effects that transcend the normal coffeehouse fare. These electronically-enhanced vocals are also used in Flakes, a synth-heavy, acoustic guitar gem that truly showcases Coadic’s talented band, which includes her husband Sean Cobb.
There is a precedent for international success in artists such as Colleen Coadic. In 1995, another Alaskan coffeehouse folkster who goes by the name of Jewel broke through to the mainstream where she remains today. Some big name attention has been recently paid to Coadic as she opened for Blues Traveler, Ani DiFranco, and Alanis Morrisette. At this point, her solo shows are limited to her home turf and its surrounding regions, but based upon the strength of The Opposite Only Better, the rest of the Lower 48 will probably be seeing a lot more of Coadic as she deservedly garners additional recognition.
1 Star: Pitiful
2 Stars: Listenable
3 Stars: Respectable
4 Stars: Excellent
5 Stars: Can't Live Without It!!
Copyright © 2002 The Music Box