At first, listening to Krista Detor’s Flat Earth Diary gives the deceitful feeling that the release is just another Country/Folk record with a voice reminiscent of the US female artists of the genre ranging from the Carly Simon to Sheryl Crowe and maybe beyond the genre the depth of K.D. Lang. Maybe so, but you would be mistaken to leave it there and dismiss this record or Krista Detor as another of the same.
Ferryman’s Dream, the first track, does introduce the album as a country/folk piece but this until you notice the musical contretemps at the beginning of each verse. This is a warning of what there is to come: a Country/Folk sound but infused with subtle fusions of Jazz here, Latin there and more traditional Americana over there. Picking up the pace comes the second track that sees her voice going up and down the barely frenetic ride of ‘Belle of the ball’ as to invite us to some unique line-dancing. At some point, Fine Print comes in with a latent reggae tone at the back of what is in effect a slow line-dancing Americana. Favourites are the excellent Bridges, the Latin-infused and 1920s retro fusion Red Velvet box which perfectly match her vocals. All tracks are packed with an elegant display of musicianship, in particular, the crafty way that the plethora of guest bassists does not in any way overwhelm the tracks, as they alternatively provide rhythmic and counter-rhythmic, melodics… On one track, the piano at times shows some virtuoso frills but these are done with a connoisseur touché to balance out the almost Celtic strings, the occasional eerie backing harmonies and a subtle reggae tone in Fine Print. The superbly matched voice of Krista Detor hovers elegantly over it all as she lays or rather even lazes her velvet vocals over the lovely melodies that she crafts, intensifying their evocativeness and leaving an after-taste of peace. A guitar hooks the heartstrings in Blowing Kisses for an elegant goodbye.
Yet again, Krista Detor releases a record that proves that she cannot be boxed up in a genre and that her music is best left to wallow freely on the waves of her muse. And it is with pleasure that we ride on those waves, carried by her voice and beautiful arrangements. A definite 2014 favourite.