All Of Our Names – Sarah Harmer

Having heard about Sarah Harmer for years but only getting to hear her music for the last couple, her vocals are still great enough for me to claim her as one of my favourite singers. What got me hooked on Ms. Harmer is her dreamy Silver Road off the Men With Brooms Soundtrack and also included here, on her 2004 release All Of Our Names, which she co-produced. Guest musicians on the album include Howie Beck, Gavin Brown, Jim Bryson and Ian Thornley. Harmer plays a number of instruments on the album, including guitar, bass, and drums. Her vocals have a smoky feel, almost like Joni Mitchell, to it.

The album starts off with Pendulums, comparing our lives to the movement of a pendulum – swinging one way first and then the opposite way next. Almost was a hit single for Sarah, with its breezy feel of what seems to be, infatuation and shyness to call the object of that infatuation. You can hear falling rain in the background of Greeting Card Aisle. The song’s resignation is palpable and strong over the urgent acoustic guitar line, the one that accelerates and slows like an old car in winter. Have you got me in your bleeding heart file/Next to Lady Luck?” Harmer asks. “Well this Light of your Life has drawn the blind, and you can just hear her bitter exhale of air. Bittersweet.

New Enemy is about a person asking if the other person finds a new person to hate, will he/she stop hating the singer? My fav Harmer song Silver Road is next – I’ll be way down the silver road, i’ll go Where the moon has it lit up, Turn off your headlights and go slowly, I don’t want it to let up. All I can think of is a big full moon and a clear night sky, with plenty of stars. War is the theme of the next song, Dandelions In Bullet Holes. Things To Forget follows, reminding me of a long road trip on a holiday.

Came On Lion, Took It All, Tether & Go To Sleep round out this wonderful album by the very gifted singer from Kingston, Ontario. Female singers like her are the reason why I never have to go for that JLo, Jessica Simpson or Beyonce cd – why settle for crap, when you have chocolate ;)