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Local Color

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Album Review

Local Color runs pretty much the same stylistic course as all of Solid Air's previous albums. Allegra Broughton's throaty vocals are at the center of these laid-back tunes, as she sings her way sultrily across a variety of country-rock, folk, and mature pop settings. Broughton's a highly underrated singer, with tons of personality but few annoying affectations, able to handle the girlish '60s-style pop of "I Have Had Enough" and the country twang of "Borderline" with equal aplomb. (1980s jangle pop fans might remember the now-retired Marti Jones, the marginally better-known singer that Broughton most resembles vocally.) Her bandmates are less distinctive, handling the varied arrangements entirely competently but with a vague sort of facelessness that's the album's primary drawback. Broughton is such a talented singer that it's kind of a disappointment that she doesn't sound at all challenged by these tunes. Local Color is an enjoyable album, but it's not hard to think that Solid Air (or at least Allegra Broughton) might have a great one in them.


Genre: Singer/Songwriter

Years Active: '90s, '00s

Solid Air revolves around the nucleus of Sam Page and Allegra Broughton, musicians who first joined forces as a duo in 1983. Page contributes vocals and plays acoustic and electric bass, while Broughton also sings in addition to playing the guitar. The duo allowed their collaboration to evolve into a four-man band in 1990 with the addition of drummer Rick Cutler and Steve Barbieri, who sings and plays harmonica and guitar. Two years later, the band earned a nomination for San Francisco Weekly's Alternative...
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Local Color, Solid Air
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