Rosi Golan: Lead Balloon

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Rosi Golan
Lead Balloon
(Family Records)

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After her debut record landed her soundtrack slots on film and in television, Rosi Golan has returned with her follow-up, Lead Balloon. To call the shift in her sound a maturation would be a disservice to The Drifter and the Gypsy. Instead, it seems to have gone on a roadtrip, shaped by the people she has met and the experiences she has encountered around the world.

There’s no particular genre or unifying theme to draw together the songs on Lead Balloon. Instead, it’s a collection of tracks that are all delicate, beautiful, and based on acoustic guitar and Golan’s effortless, honeyed voice. “You & I,” for instance, is a catchy piece of Americana, while the title track is a folk confession straight from the sleeve.

Lead Balloon also benefits from the team that has helped Golan hone her sound.  Producer Tony Berg pushed her to challenge herself and also contributed unconventional instruments like harmonium and ukulele. Northern Irish singer/songwriter Iain Archer is a treat to hear on “Seeing Ghosts” and “A Lot of Things.” Perhaps the highlight is Snow Patrol frontman Gary Lightbody taking “Everything is Brilliant” to another level. The title and refrain are reminiscent of Kurt Vonnegut, already a plus, but the combination of vocals really goes straight to the heart.

If you haven’t heard of Rosi Golan yet, you should join the bandwagon before it gets too large. The progress she’s made already shows that she will be a versatile talent clawing her way up against any odds, using her obstacles as material to give her voice a purpose.

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