Sarah Harmer - I Am a Mountain

Sarah Harmer
I Am a Mountain

(Cold Snap/Zoe/Rounder)

First Appeared in The Music Box, February 2006, Volume 13, #2

Written by John Metzger

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After garnering a tremendous amount of praise for her proper solo debut You Were Here — her previous endeavor Songs for Clem was recorded as a gift for her father and wasn’t meant for public consumption — Sarah Harmer seemingly hit a wall with the decidedly lackluster All of Our Names. With the release of her latest effort I Am a Mountain, however, she officially is back on track. Employing a largely acoustic supporting cast, Harmer returns to her roots by shading her traditional-minded material with an array of impeccably delivered, bluegrass-tinged flourishes, essentially embedding the poignant lyricism and folk-pop gracefulness of You Were Here within the pastoral charm of Songs for Clem. As always with Harmer, there’s a quiet, melancholic flavor to the set, which not only has as much to do with the expressiveness of her engaging alto as it does with her love-torn and world-weary lyrics, but also is perfectly suited to relaying the tales of strength and survival that fill I Am a Mountain. Whether trying to save Mother Earth on Escarpment Blues, capturing the fragile vulnerability of Dolly Parton’s Will He Be Waiting for Me?, coming to terms with the impending death that looms within Goin’ Out, or pondering rebirth on Oleander, Harmer sounds completely comfortable basking in the warm glow of her subtle and intimate arrangements, which frequently bring to mind another pair of Canadian gems: Po’ Girl and Joni Mitchell. starstarstar ˝

I Am a Mountain is available from
Barnes & Noble. To order, Click Here!

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Ratings

1 Star: Pitiful
2 Stars: Listenable
3 Stars: Respectable
4 Stars: Excellent
5 Stars: Can't Live Without It!!

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Copyright © 2006 The Music Box