Friday, May 5, 2017

Cause for Paws – Rescue Me

Cause for Paws – Rescue Me 

All of the tracks on Rescue Me! were donated to the project by the songwriters and performers: Mary Ann Kennedy, Kathy Chiavola, Cindy Mangsen, Robin Flower, Libby McLaren, Annie Lalley, Heidi Muller, Mark Weems, Ashley Jo Farmer, Friction Farm (Aidan Quinn & Christine Stay), Effron White, Jamie Anderson, Amy White, and Joel Mabus. And with great joy, Blue Night Records has pledged to donate all of its profits from Rescue Me! sales and full CD downloads to animal welfare organizations.

Get your paws out and start scratching for dogs and cats, as Rescue Me ! packs a little of both playfully funny and deadly seriously songs culled from original releases by this great assortment of artists. It’s hard to mention them all with each track, or else this would be a much longer read. But it has everything the Americana, bluegrass and country music lover would want to hear in songs about pets. Starting with a cool story about a cat with a job, entitled “Barn Cat.” And if you can get into all to be heard, then there is no better way to start. The hardest part is relating to these stories about other people’s pets, but if you can block it, you’ll come around.

“Possum And Pearl” contains much more than it appears as a story, but told so well it wins you over with ease, if you let it. Finding abandoned dogs is part of it, but the relationships they go onto have and the bond they form is really the fruit of the bluegrass oriented piece. And even though softly told, it comes out one of the more interesting tracks. This goes into “Our Cats” by Cindy Mangsen, and it’s yet completely different from the previous two. Just to put something in the path early on, there aren’t many tracks that fall very similar, even though the titles can deceive that factor. But this track stands out because there is no music, it’s full acappella with three voices, two of which back Cindy Mangsen. This is most definitely a highlight point.

“Get A Dog” is the next story to delve into, and it is one of the top shelf additions. The soft vocal refrain leads into a funky, groovy reggae dominated backing that is almost too distracting from the story because it offers so much good music which is a departure from everything else on it. You get carried away with the music and a chance to hear it over again to absorb the story is practically forced. But care not, as this track goes the distance with any of its surrounding action. If they were putting these out as singles for the same cause, this one would get my money over and over. It’s a keeper for sure, and the lyrics suffer nowhere on it, they just don’t jump out like the music does.

Jumping ahead a couple of tracks to the mentions of “My Best Friend” “Kitty Kitty” and “Why, Why, Why” as a few stand outs as well. Especially considering the storyline of the third one, as it probably goes above and beyond most here in the lyrics. But it’s also musically valuable with strong country roots, and a slower paced flow to sink into. This is another one of the pleasers on this platter. As well as “Catitude” with its broken family story that leaves this cat with a-tude, so to express.  It’s all in good fun, even when it’s sad, and pets live in the moment anyway, so they make for good song subject matter. It doesn’t matter if they’re cats or dogs.

“I Miss The Dog” and “The Best Dog” go together hand in hand, and I find Amy White to be one of the more pleasing artists on this compilation. Her song The Best Dog involves three dogs in the story, and it should be heard and appreciated for all its worth, just as the others. They all equally add to each-others stories by being compiled onto one disc in a seamless running order. And it all closes with a track from Joel Mabus, entitled “The Kitty Ditty.” It jumps around just like a cat, as it helps finish a worthy release by a lot of talent on one single CD. Don’t walk, run to donate and listen, as these treats don’t go around that often. 


Randy Jones

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