The Other Side

Rachael Sage

MPress Records, 2023

REVIEW BY: Tom Haugen


An active solo artist and record label owner since the ’90s (she’s the CEO of Mpress Records), Rachael Sage delivers her 15th solo studio album, continuing her charming brand of pop, rock and folk sounds that use her multi-instrumentalist skills and warm voice splendidly. my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

The very gentle “Whistle Blow” opens the listen with Sage’s poetic singing alongside light drums and a chilling atmosphere that’s a bit mysterious. “Flowers For Free” continues the gracefulness with warm keys and soulful brass that carries agile melodies, too.

Further into Side A, “The Place Of Fun” benefits much from cozy acoustic guitar amid the timeless folk qualities, while “Rebecca” is string focused in the elegant and orchestral nods of the grittier, rock presence.

The second half of the listen leads with the articulate pop-rock sensibilities of “Albatross,” where Sage's vivid storytelling is particularly gripping, and “Deepest Dark,” the album's best, is piano focused and full of heartfelt, sincere song craft.

Landing near the end, “Forgive Me This” is a powerful, emotive display of confessional style songwriting that anyone can relate to, and “I Made A Case” exits with the legendary Howard Jones’ guest vocals in attendance for the hazy, darker filled finish that’s populated by violin, upright bass, Wurlitzer, cello, Rhodes, electric guitars, accordion and trumpet.

Also a visual artist, Sage supplements the Deluxe Vinyl Version of this release with 16 original paintings that further illustrate her wide and varied talents. Whether this is your first time listening or you’ve been along for some duration of Sage’s lengthy and esteemed career, there’s little doubt that she's one of the most talented and prolific songwriters of this generation, and her name certainly belongs in the same sentence with Norah Jones, Sarah McLachlan or Ani DiFranco.

Rating: B+

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



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