Garrison Starr: Airstreams & Satellites (2004)
Ms. Starr first reached the airways with her 1996 debut Stupid Girl. Geffen Records subsequently picked her up, perhaps, in the eyes of the suits, promising to be the next Melissa Etheridge, except this time more mainstream and country. After two recordings with Geffen, Ms. Starr returned to indie labels with the very well received Songs from Take-off to Landing on Back Porch Records. On Airstreams & Satellites, little is left of the country promise. She, like Mindy Smith, is trying to carve out a place in the unforgiving 21st Century country/fold/adult contemporary crossover market.
The songs are provocative. "Gasoline" might be major updating of the blues tune, "I Asked for Water," where Ms. Starr sings over a retro-industrial purr:
You wrapped your arms around me and I woke up soaked in gasoline...
This is the song Howlin’ Wolf would have sung, he had been a white woman in the new South. "Superhero" is the Nirvana hard rock salute to childhood, a kind of cyber- To Kill A Mockingbird. "Underneath the Wheel" is a pleasant acoustic tome lamenting of love running out of fuel too early. These are great songs with catchy riffs and hooks. I hope this music has what it takes to put a crack into the armor of the current popular music market. God knows someone must do it.
Track Listing: Gasoline; Sing; Hey Girl; Superhero; Underneath The Wheel; Wonderful Thing Like A Drug; Runner-Up; One-Sided; Airstreams & Satellites.
Personnel: Garrison Starr
Record Label: Vanguard Records
Style: Beyond Jazz