THURSDAY, MAY 19, 2022
Suzanne Lavine: “Everything’s Alright” (2022) CD Review
After a long absence from music, singer and songwriter Suzanne Lavine released a solo EP titled Crystal Clear in 2019. She has now followed that with a new EP, Everything’s Alright, featuring the same group of musicians backing her. Marc Seligman (who played with Suzanne Lavine in The Vines in the 1980s) is on bass, Seth Baer is on drums, and Cliff Hillis is on electric guitar and keyboards. Cliff Hillis also produced this release, as well as recorded, mixed and mastered the tracks, and also provides some backing vocals. Special guest Kelley Ryan joins the group on backing vocals on one of the tracks. This EP contains all original material, written by Suzanne Lavine.
The disc opens with “Lost Inside,” which has a wonderful folk pop sound. “You thought you had me/You treated me badly/But so sadly/I was lost inside/I made excuses/But they were useless.” Yeah, it describes a rather harmful relationship, but does so with a bright, cheerful sound. And in the second half there is a cool instrumental section featuring some really nice work on guitar. It is during that instrumental section that a change occurs, for after that Suzanne Lavine sings, “Now I’m much smarter than before/Eyes wide open as I walk right through the door.” Yes, the future sounds bright, as she repeats, “I’m never going back” at the end. And indeed, the disc’s second song, “I’m So Lucky,” describes a much better relationship, opening with these lines: “I am so lucky to be with you/With you beside me, it’s all brand new/Right from the start/I knew in my heart/That you were the one for me.” See? Things do get better. It is on this track that Kelley Ryan joins Suzanne Lavine on vocals. You might know her from her own solo career. I am especially fond of her 2017 release, Telescope. This song has a totally sweet sound and vibe. It is a song to play for the love of your life.
It is from “Both Feet On The Ground” that the EP gets its title. Interestingly, it is in the line “Hoping everything’s alright,” which of course is quite a bit different from stating outright that everything’s all right. But there days, hoping feels the best we can do. This song has a great folk pop sound, featuring some excellent work on guitar and a cool bass line. A strong Byrds influence can be heard at certain points. “I can’t remember why/So we can walk away/And save what’s left of this rainy day.” The EP concludes with “Tired Of Feeling Bad,” which addresses a troublesome relationship. “I never understood why you would treat me this way/Sorry’s no good, there’s so much more you need to say.” I think folks can relate to being tired of feeling bad, for even those of us in loving relationships can apply this sentiment to realms outside of romantic relationships. I also like the hopeful vibe of this song. Listening to the way she delivers these lines, you know she’s going to be fine. And that feeling spreads to all of us listening.
CD Track List
I’m So Lucky
Both Feet On The Ground
Tired Of Feeling Bad
Everything’s Alright was released on April 1, 2022.