Beat It To Pieces - Danielle Hebert
Contemporary global music is woefully underexposed. That is the sole impetus behind our work in presenting, programming and promoting its artists. But, sometimes I feel like we do them an additional disservice by focusing exclusively on the aspect of their work that falls into the global genre. Most well-rounded artists have musical interests beyond the styles they are known for, and many will make the time and effort to apply themselves in these other directions. Danielle Hebert is a gutsy vocalist and a wicked guitar player who bears the markings of a multitude of influences. Visit her online at www.daniellehebert.com and peruse her biography. It’s an engaging and adventure-filled tale that begins in rural Quebec where she studied classical and jazz guitar; classical from her mother’s musical love and Miles Davis and Jimi Hendrix from her father’s. In storybook fashion, the tale moves from the new world countryside to the old world's great cities; Berlin, Paris and London, equestrian competition, sculpting, French albums, bilingual albums, then an English language album. All of these things play integral parts in shaping her musical vision. She’s currently in Istanbul studying the baglama or saz, a tear drop, long neck lute that is shared by many cultures around the Middle East. No doubt, this experience too will manifest itself in more global sounds from this versatile musician. But, that’s not what Beat It To Pieces is about. Before Turkey, Danielle found herself playing the part of a 21st century wandering minstrel. With no fixed address, a travel guitar and a motorcycle she struck out on a 40 thousand kilometer solo odyssey around the USA, returning to mix out this, her 5th album, a summation of a tumultuous chapter in her life, filled with themes of love, resilience and courage. And, it rocks big time. A wispier voice wouldn’t be up to the sonic challenge her guitar throws down, but Danielle retains control and confidence. The opening power pop juggernaut, ‘Gonna Lose My Fear’ hooks the ear with a mighty declaration of defiance, couched in a Bob Mould-style wall of guitars. Other tracks like ‘ Wicked Girl’ and ‘Make Sound’ are as heavy as anything ever recorded by Soundgarden or Alice In Chains. Deeply anchored bass work by Robbie Harrington, solid drumming from Matt Luneau and production by Commodor Perry Barrett (that’s his given name) flesh out a vital record that reveals more of the fascinating story that is Danielle Hebert. No, it’s not global; you’ll probably have to wait until the next chapter for that. Stay tuned.