A powerful reminder of the power of a good song and a good songwriter.
Nashville resident Calista Garcia has a glass half full view of the world. She admits to being shaken by the events of the last couple of years – not only COVID but wildfires and even a tornado that tore at the edges of home. She tags the EP ‘A Beautiful World’ with the quote ‘My greatest wish is that this song helps you as a listener let go of your fears, and feel a little free from your hangups. This really is a beautiful world we get to live in.’ A noble if naive sentiment, I doubt she has ever lived in Wellingborough, let alone faced universal credit cuts whilst bringing up children on her own but it is an altruistic hope and should not be dismissed.
The EP opens with a gorgeous narrative song on ‘Deep Blue Diving’ set to an insistent acoustic guitar figure and there’s a real feeling of Conor Oberst both in tuning and delivery. Garcia’s voice is expressive and interesting and when the band comes in the song shifts gear effortlessly opening its arms to welcome the listener into the rest of the tracks. Great start. ‘My Love’ is a more traditional arrangement to a delightful melody and vocally there is a hint of Suzanne Vega in the arrangement. ‘Half the Time’ is a more traditional song with country edges, all bright harmonies and up-front vocals. It shuffles along in a delicate way before a gorgeous a cappella finale. ‘Magnolia Tree’ is a stately hymn in what feels like a waltz time and the production is spot-on as the chorus comes around with the backing vocals pin-sharp as the guitar and piano roll along.
A delightful EP showcasing a young singer-songwriter who has a big career in front of her. Recommended.