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It takes a lot of guts to do covers of Van Morrison and Joni Mitchell on your record. There's the inevitable critique of your version of a classic and your original music is right next door for comparison. Well, it is a nice surprise that Liz Longley does Van and Joni well (faithful treatments, no wrong-headed detours) and her own tunes shine brightly. Liz constructs songs and sounds similar to Shawn Colvin (not a bad reference point at all). The opener, "When You've Got Trouble" starts things off sweetly and you think you're in for a set of valentines, but the very next song, "If You Want To," a hard tune about a troubled relationship, clues you in that there's going to be complexity here--kinda like real life. "Unraveling" is heart-breaking, about watching an older loved one fade into forgetfulness. The closer, "Dough 4 Dough" is a very funny song about a very aggressive Girl Scout cookie seller. Longley has an impressive musical resume as a graduate of the Berklee School of Music and a recipient of the BMI John Lennon songwriting award. All of this shows, and it's a pleasure to see another young singer-songwriter succeed with a solid set of music. 07/11 Michael J. F-Singer/Songwriter. [NOTE: "Bit--" on songs #2 and #11.]

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Compiled by the WYCE Journalism Club

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