With ‘Orange Blossom Child,’ Florida’s Van Plating comes up with her most mature album yet.
If you have what ‘Orange Blossom Child,’ the title of Van Plating’s new album refers to, you would have to know about where this singer-songwriter originates from – the (usually) sunny and warm Florida. To many Americana aficionados, the first two names that would come up when Florida origins are mentioned would be those of Gram Parsons and Tom Petty, and yes, there is quite a bit here on Van Plating’s album that can easily be connected to both. Maybe for her it was an unconscious thing, but it is there, both in the song structures and their feel and is often in a singular song, like on ‘They’re Gonna Kill You Anyway.’ Or it just might be in those oranges that surround her, but her songwriting and excellent vocals have both that feel and quality that she shares with her fellow well-known Floridians.
There are a number of collaborations on the album that further enrich Van Plating’s songs, digging deep into the southern side of Americana. ‘The Hard Way’ featuring Reckless Kelly is one of the standouts. As she put it herself, “I am the Orange Blossom Child after all, and along the way, I invited people to join me in the process. The result is a creation that is so much larger, more colorful, and more lush than anything I could have created alone. No one is an island. This time, I didn’t create like one.”
‘Orange Blossom Child’ is surely Van Plating’s most mature effort so far, combining everything from cosmic country and bluegrass to Tom Petty’s psych inclinations and Allman Brothers-style southern rock. An excellent effort.