Claire Lynch – Whatcha Gonna Do (CD)

Each of the twelve cuts on “Whatcha Gonna Do” is an additional piece of the beautiful puzzle that represents Lynch’s own unique skill set. Those that are in the know would be familiar with Lynch’s prior work, beginning with eir work in the underrated Front Porch String Band. Listeners are given a microcosm of what is to follow with the disc’s first track, “Great Day in the Mornin’”. “Great Day” is memorable due both to the alluring vocals put forth by Lynch, but also because of the Bluegrass-influenced instrumentation that is present.

Whether it is the bass laid down by Mark Schatz or Jim Hurst’s guitar, there is a sense that all elements need to be present to create music that is that endearing. “My Florida Sunshine” is where “Whatcha Gonna Do” truly shines. It is during this track that the banjo rivals Lynch’s vocals for dominance. As has been present on tracks from the aforementioned “Great Day” all the way out to “A Canary’s Song”, there seems to be a unity present in this playful struggle that forces all component parts to work at the highest possible caliber. Where “My Florida Sunshine” was able to be impressive based on the overall catchiness that all parts of Claire Lynch’s band contributed, “Woods of Sipsey” has to be the one track on the album that takes Lynch et al out of their comfort zone.

However, the talent held by each member is such that this darker, more emotive track is able to stand out in stark contrast to the rest of the tracks on “Whatcha Gonna Do”, while contributing to the mystique that is inherent here. Furthermore, the presence of a “Woods of Sipsey” on “Whatcha Gonna Do” showcases the fact that anything can happen on a Lynch album; where there may be heavy dollops of bluegrass and country styles, that Lynch can bring forth forgotten or otherwise unused musical styles or genres into the mix. It is this spontaneous type of sound that makes “Whatcha Gonna Do” into an album that is a must-listen, while further stoking the fires of anyone listening in to ensure that they see Lynch and eir band live or pick up any subsequent albums.

Top Tracks: Great Day in the Mornin’, That’s What Makes You Strong

Rating: 8.0/10

Claire Lynch – Whatcha Gonna Do (CD) / 2009 Rounder / 12 Tracks / http://www.clairelynch.com / http://www.rounder.com

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