Funny that Rosie Ledet’s 10th studio album would be titled Raw! when that’s been an apt description of her music all along. But truth be told, this one’s rawer than her typical fare.
Produced, mixed and mastered by guitarist André Nizzari, nearly all tracks are one-takes with “You’re Only Lonely” being the only two take with very little dubbed-in guitar solos afterwards. Compared to Ledet’s previous pair of JSP offerings, the drums and bass are not overly prominent but clean sounding with an occasional pop or funk flurry from bassist Chuck Bush.
Yet, the austere arrangements better showcase Ledet’s alluring, siren pipes that are truly a thing of beauty. She varies her inflection and alters her moods to be playful, sensuous or entrancing on this all original affair.
Compared to the JSP offerings, Nizzari has less of a lead guitar presence but still manages to weave in an occasional searing solo (“It Might Be You”). At times, the proceedings feel experimental.
“No Do Over” is sans accordion and filled, instead, with Nizzari’s edgy, fuzzed guitar; “Keep on Dancing” finds him accompanying on organ which complements Ledet’s accordion and Bush’s splattery bass well. There are no seconds of silence between tracks; every song launches without hesitation and differs from its predecessor in terms of tone, rhythm and licks.
Not your Rosie’s Rosie anymore but adventuresome nonetheless.