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Waxed - Record Review from Issue #35 Sept-Oct 2001

Karen Poston

Real Bad (Music Room)

Some may know Karen Poston from her role as one of Ted Roddy’s Tearjoint Troubadors, or from “Lydia”, a song she wrote that was recorded by Slaid Cleaves on his last CD, Broke Down. Her debut, Real Bad, features ten originals and two choice covers; it covers a lot of musical territory with a great deal of heart and style, and manages to always keep it country.

Poston engaged an impressive array of Austin musicians to bring her music alive, including Roddy, Cleaves, Kelly Willis, Gurf Morlix, Roger Wallace, and guitarist/producer Jim Stringer. She kicks things off with the country rockin’ title track, then delves into the mournful “Lydia”, an Appalachian tale of a widowed woman who has lost two of her loved ones to the coal mines of Virginia.

The high-stepping honky-tonker “Flowered Dresses” is another highlight, while “Black Ice” is a Southern Rock “Wreck On The Highway” of sorts which allows Poston’s band, the Crystal Pistols, to really stretch out on its coda. But the real star is Poston, whose sassy vocals and potent songwriting talent make her the best new artist to come out of Austin in quite a while.

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Originally Featured in Issue #35 Sept-Oct 2001

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