A late release in 2007 that I almost overlooked is Dan Israel’s Turning. In fact this albume has become a late year Twangville fave. Israel has been around a while from the Midwest to Austin and back again. He has opened for acts as diverse as Morissey, Spoon and Peter Himmelman. He has won songwriter awards in both Austin and Minneapolis, including Minnesota songwriter of the year in 2006. He has done albums solo and with his backing band The Cultivators. This album is a combination of friends and members of The Cultivators. The friends who join him are a who’s who of the Midwest Music scene. Marc Perlman (The Jayhawks), Dave Boquist (Son Volt), John Munson (Semisonic) and Jesse Green (Foo Fighters and Wilco) just to name a few.
All of these different contributors come together under the singular vision of Israel to make a cohesive album. If you like roots rock there is something for you here. The first three songs on the album prove this. The album opens with “Triangle,” which showcases Israel’s singer-songwriter side. This leads into the lose rocking and rootsy “Counting on You.” The next song “Hurt and Love” is an Americana song with a gentle banjo and fiddle inter-play the creates a musical metaphor to the tug of war in relationships that the song addresses. The album’s highlight is the power pop anthem “News to Me.” Also, the slide guitar work on “Song for Africa” makes that song stand out. In all honesty there is no weak link on this album. It is strong from start to finish.
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This review also appears on Amber Waves of Twang
About the author: Chip and his family live in Birmingham, AL. Roll Tide!