Monday, July 4, 2016

Diana Rein -- Long Road

"Long Road" is Diana Rein's second release, following 2007's "The Back Room." This time around Diana wrote and recorded and produced everything and she sings and plays all the lead guitar, rhythm guitar, bass guitar, and EZdrummer. It took her 18 months to complete this project, and I for one am glad she has delivered it--this one is a candidate for "Bruce's Top 10 Releases of 2016," mostly because Diana can really sing, and she's really good on the guitar, and she is a really good songwriter. It's the whole package!

The twelve songs here cover pretty varied territory. Things start out with the title track, which has the singer holding fast to her dream, with a c all-and-response between the vocals and guitar that just pulls you in. "Wild One" is a rocker with top-notch lead guitar work--this is the kind of music I was hoping Joan Jett would grow into, name-checking Stevie Ray Vaughan. "Livin' Loud" slows things down just a bit, but with a 60ish lead guitar, it reminds me of Peter Green era Fleetwood Mac. "Green Light" is an answer song to Doyle Bramhall II's "Green Light Girl" and it has just a splash of surf music in the rhythm guitar. The singing is spot-on too. "Rebel With A Cause" is a meditation on a photo of James Dean with crunchy guitars and a seductive vocal. "The Real Thing" features a funk/rock groove and lyrical sass. "Done Me Dirty" is a tell-off with guitar-venom and maybe the best lyrics of any song on the cd. "Don't Walk Away" is a soulful spin on the lover-take-me-back story with beautiful guitar work. "Come Back Home" is addressed to the singer's dream, and filled with Duane Allman-esque guitar work. "Wicked" is a melancholy song, and the guitar sings of regret and sorrow. Again, the guitar reminds me of early Peter Green or maybe Jeff Beck. "Down Down Down" starts out slow, but it soon becomes a full-tilt rocker. The closing song is "Peace," which was written after the death of Diana's dog Zoe.

Throughout the dozen songs there is nowhere a clunker, nowhere to take a breath, no false steps. All of these songs are radio-ready.  An individual's work filled with talent and passion, a fine fine release.

You can buy this cd at Diana's website: