Gileah Taylor “Slow Parade”

Velvet Blue Music, 2024

A slow-evolving delight of an album.

It might be a simple thing to say that modern Americana music has more to do with that not-easy-to-define ‘feel’ rather than any specifically defined genre. That ‘feel’ is either there or it isn’t, no matter what musical element a specific artist uses to create hers/his/their music.

This is an idea that keeps flowing while you listen to the 10 tracks that so easily flow on ‘Slow Parade,’ the amply-titled new album by  North Florida singer-songwriter Gileah Taylor. If you are not that familiar with Taylor’s work, you can just take a quick look at the list of artists she opened for or shared a stage with to get an idea about the musical and the direction she is going here – Over The Rhine, Jeff Tweedy, Rosanne Cash.

Taylor’s music is an intriguing combination of well-constructed chamber pop that subtly weaves in a string quartet through excellent arrangements and production by Nashville’s Gideon Brothers that give Taylor’s quite complex songwriting and vocals reminiscent of Fay Webster that right touch it needs.

Yet that complexity is constructed with seemingly simple musical elements that make Talyor’s music subtle and layered at the same time, whether it is the strings and piano-driven opener of ‘My Vision Is Coming Back,’ or the sparse, roots-tinged songs like ‘Still Here.’ At the same time, there is a lyrical concept running through the album that has an autobiographical element dealing with her journey from childhood dreams to how to achieve happiness as an adult. While this might sound somewhat lofty or too introspective, Taylor is able to construct her lyrics in a manner that quite a few listeners can relate to, particularly since their musical setting suits them so well.

‘Slow Parade’ can be called slow, but only in one sense – it is one of those albums that uncovers its delights in slow-evolving listens that grow on the listeners every time they put this album on.


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