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Still Riot

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Album Review

On her ninth album (her fifth of the 1990s), Ferron continued to explore life's detail with a sort of desperate hopefulness, repeating over and over on the title track, "There is a way through constant sorrow," and seeking that way while acknowledging that sorrow in the rest of the songs. (Even "Dazzle The Beast," nominally a Christmas song, was downbeat.) As usual, she employed an unflinching honesty to work her way through to insight, noting in "Venus As Appearances," for example, "I wasted nights with dreams of kisses so hot / 'Course the ending was same as if I'd gone without her." Musically, she continued to develop dense arrangements that went well beyond her talkie beginnings. If anything, however, the arrangements were too dense to be really moving, even as the lyrics sometimes were too involved to be really involving. This was heard best in the new recording of "Ain't Life A Brook" (copyright 1978), perhaps her best song, which was more impressive in its earlier renditions with only an acoustic guitar than it was here. All of which is to say that instead of being as stunning as her records usually are, Still Riot was merely impressive.

Biography

Born: June 2, 1952 in Vancouver, British Columbia, Cana

Genre: Singer/Songwriter

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

In listening to Ferron's music, audiences are allowed to acknowledge the passage of time, people, memories, and hopes through her poetic metaphors. Her familiar vernacular, direct statements, enlightened associations, warm and husky voice, and engaging stage presence have permitted identification with her experiences and her process, her struggles and her wisdom, her universal anguish and strength. For a time beginning in 1986, however, many of her followers began to wonder about and mourn her momentary...
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Still Riot, Ferron
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