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Driving North

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Album Review

If the Lilith Fair tour/festival were still in existence, Chris Pureka would certainly have been asked to be part of the roster. With her acoustic guitar and understated voice leading the charge, Pureka's sound and style sound very similar to such Lilith veterans as the Indigo Girls — as evidenced by 2004's Driving North. The follow-up to Pureka's 2001 self-titled EP shows the singer/songwriter penning songs that appear to be autobiographical from a lyrical standpoint — tracks such as "Silo Song" and "Porch Songs" focus on the theme of growing up in a small town, while "3 A.M." and "Afterall" focus on relationships. And although several guest musicians dropped by the sessions, Pureka's voice and guitar plucking and strumming remain the focal point throughout.

Customer Reviews

absolutely amazing

This album showcases Chris' penetrating voice, poignant lyrics, and excellent guitar work. I highly recommend it to ANY fans of folk, especially those who enjoy the slightly more mournful/bitter side of the genre.


If I could give this album more than 5 stars I would. I don't really have the words to describe how much Chris's beautiful, honest, deceptively simple lyrics affect me. Chris has a voice that really tugs at the's the perfect complement to her lyrics. "Burning Bridges", "Cynical" and "Driving North" are perhaps my favourite songs off this album, but the album as a whole is such an amazing journey. The same can be said for her more recent album, Dryland. I heard "Burning Bridges" on Pandora and subsequently bought everything I could find by her...such a good $20 I spent. The 30 second clips on itunes really don't do her justice, just buy the album, you won't regret it.

Great on first listen and gets better over time

I stumbled across Chris Pureka because her name kept popping up in my Genius sidebar, and on a whim, I downloaded a few tracks from Driving North. In a short time, I was back for the album, and then for her other albums. Chris Pureka's songs have a quiet but intense lyrical quality. There is a richness to her songwriting --to the tension between her vocal melody and the guitar -- that makes these songs great on first listen, but even better after months of listening. This has become one of my favorite albums in this genre, and there is not a song on this album that fails to deliver. I would recommend "Cynical" and "Burning Bridges" as good first tunes, but don't miss her more subtle and complex songs, like "Grey" and "Unwelcome."