100 Miles From Memphis

Studio Album by released in 2010

100 Miles From Memphis review

Despite all the expectations

Brilliant Sheryl Crow recorded a CD with a heart of soul, the music that was born in Memphis. Not far from here is the place of the singer’s birth and childhood years, too. Soul was always around her and left a remarkable trace on the music of the future star. Since then, Sheryl has covered a huge distance, geographically from Memphis, and musically from soul. She has delivered many records that sounded really different from each other, like the pop-rock Tuesday Night Music Club, and the ballad-filled Wildflower. Whatever was offered on the singer’s albums, the audience always gave it a warm welcome, and the critics granted her with official awards and unofficial titles. Only Detours (2008) did not, and, pretty likely, will not reach the platinum status. The last events in the artist’s life, including the breakup with Lance Armstrong and fighting against cancer, questioned not only the genre Crow would choose next time, but even her actual career prospects. When it was clear that she was not going to give up, many were set to think that she would drop an aggressive rock-n-roll ‘in-your-face-I’m-still-ok’ record. Yet she prepared a soul-oriented CD called 100 Miles From Memphis.

Retro touches on 100 Miles From Memphis

The first track off Sheryl Crow’s new album - Our Love is Fading – is simple like any other successful pop-music piece. Unsophisticated lyrics to the mid-tempo music and a voice you are likely to recognize: you have got all of them here. Those who did not see Sheryl and soul together will have to change their views. Peaceful Feeling, or Long Road Home will provide you with a number of most characteristic features of the 60-s and 70-s soul, in music and lyrics: organ, horns, thick bass and singing with notes of light sadness. The fresh long player’s lead-single, Summer Day, is a well-designed and well-produced song with music and singing so gentle that you think you don’t hear them but feel their soft touch on your skin. The only track lacking the retro influence is the politically colored Say What You Want. Compared to the rest of the set, it sounds quite sharp, but we know Sheryl for her tendency to speak about it in her songs. 100 Miles From Memphis also stores a couple of covers, Sign Your Name, and I Want You Back. The former is noticeable for the duet of Sheryl and Justine Timberlake, while the second one is interesting thank to her effort to sing in Michael Jackson’s manner.

Crow’s yesterday and tomorrow

It’s almost an hour of quality music. Could be the most accurate of short and shortest of accurate descriptions to Sheryl Crow’s latest long player. The singer is loved and respected for her free and easy shifting from one genre to another with conservations of something that could be called her stylistic peculiarity. It is, probably, the voice sounding effortlessly, without strain, and necessarily honestly and sincere. 100 Miles From Memphis could have been called differently and could sound should Sheryl want to leave in it a part of the negative she went through in the recent past. However, the singer seems to think that this is all a fragment of yesterday and should not be touched if not needed. Pop-rock and country, which have always been easy and pleasant for Crow to work with, have now let in soul, which is especially tangible in the voice and lyrics. Crow’s singing sometimes is unexpected and unfamiliar, yet always good. Sheryl’s new album shows that music helps find a new meaning of life, overcome most difficult hardships and remain strong and independent to set an example for the others.