Enter your details to receive the latest updates
The title track “Bet On Love”from the album features the most personal song Pharis Romero has ever penned and this intimacy reverberates throughout the 11-track record. “New Day” and “Right in the Garden” sound like songs she might sing to her children–soft, warm and full of light–while “We All Fall” carries a gentle lesson. With exceptional control, range, and vocal clarity, Pharis voice soars above these tracks, joined in exquisite, lush harmony with Jason Romero. His calm and slightly weathered voice drifts over songs of journey and heartbreak, their vocals weaving and intertwining like branches on the willows that hang over the creek outside their door. Pharis’ songwriting draws from folk wellsprings as well as deep American and Canadian roots. A lifelong student and teacher of these roots, Pharis writes songs that seem old but echo with an ease and simplicity that belies their construction. Jason contributes the sublime instrumental composition “New Caledonia,” played (along with “Roll On My Friend”) on his handmade gourd banjo, and redolent of the Baroque complexity of early Norman Blake. In a salute to the sound of old-time country music they revere so much, many of the microphones used are as vintage as they are beautiful, with “A Bit Old School” being sung and played face-to-face through a ribbon RCA microphone from the 1940s. Also in line with this stripped-down, traditional approach, the songs, including those featuring guest musicians Patrick Metzger (bass) and John Reischman (mandolin), were all recorded live on acoustic instruments. The end result is rich vocal and instrumental soundscape of an album as deceptively simple and clear as the life that inspired it.