MP3 Elizabeth Donihoo - Dream
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8 MP3 Songs
POP: Folky Pop, ROCK: Modern Rock
âI love music. Itâs as simple as that. Itâs the one thing that I know will bring joy to my life. And if I really feel connected to something like that, it can become my own personal dreamscape.â
Austinite Elizabeth Donihooâs album, âDreamâ, an apt name, relays the feel that permeates throughout. Often being teased for one word titles, Elizabeth explains, âI like the idea of one word conjuring up a whole world of meaning.â The sounds are big and lush and the earthy, yet haunting quality to her voice draws the listener in. And the lyrics are deceptively simple, yet resonate long afterwards.
Built on layers of airy textures, such as in âDonât know whyâ, and then more fully orchestrated, pop driven sounds such as in âSecretâ and âWeaveâ, Elizabethâs music takes you âto another placeâ, as she hints in âSecretâ. Evocative descriptions of other-wordly realms, such as in the title track âDreamâ, have a definite transcendent quality.
Elizabethâs songs are a combination of alternative rock and pop she calls âmoody pop-rockâ, but âthe term moody doesnât necessarily mean melancholy; the music is more mood-evokingâ¦be it loving, reminiscent or dreamy.â As for her vocals, if comparisons are necessary, Sam Phillips comes to mind.
As a Houston native growing up in Sacramento, Calif., Elizabethâs love of music was nurtured by her older brothers. She was particularly captivated by Jethro Tull and George Harrison, and anything organic. Elizabeth strives to create an organic feel in her own music as well. She also lists Jeff Buckley, Aimee Mann, Coldplay and Radiohead as other influences. âWhy Jeff Buckley? I first saw him perform at Tower Records. I was completely awe-stricken. The sounds that were coming out of himâ¦really, the most beautiful voice ever. What a soul.â
And then there are those that just speak to her. âBeck, who I simply adore. Okay, you got me. I admit it. Melancholy is good; itâs what makes you real. Peter Gabriel, my soul mate. Chris Whitley â no words.â
Of course, Austinâs music scene has served as an inspiration, too. (Like so many others, Elizabeth came to town to get a degree â hers is in psychology â and stayed.) A roster of some of the cityâs best helped fuel her creativity on âDream,â her first full-length effort. The guitar textures were contributed by Cole Hanson, whose style carries reminders of Johnny Marr and the Edge â a mix of gentle meanderings and effervescent runs. Keyboardist Derek Morris (Bob Schneider); bassists Jake Blackwell (Honeybrowne), George Reiff (Charlie Sexton, Billy Harvey) and Ronnie Johnson (James McMurtry); drummer Kevin Pearson (Gnappy); and singer-songwriter Darin Murphy are also heard.
Elizabeth worked with Austin producer and local pop guru Lars Gorannson. âIt's important to me to be intimately involved in the whole process,â she says. âWorking with Lars was always interesting. His mind is constantly in that creative vortex. He's also got this unmistakable sense of humor â full of Larsisms. It was great having that element. Anyone who works with him is in for a real experience. And he's worked with some really great bands and musicians (Cardigans, Endochine, the Real Heroes).â
Mark Younger-Smith Younger-Smith of Mixture Studio (Austin) did further production work and mixed the album. Younger-Smith was previously Billy Idolâs guitarist, co-writer and co-producer. âI thought, this is so cool that the guy working on my CD played with Billy Idol!â Elizabeth confesses, adding, âI have to admit, I get star-struck from time to time.â
âSeriously,â she says, Markâs approach to my songs matched my vision â big, lush, orchestrated sounds. This, mixed with Larsâ pop sensibility, was the perfect blend.â
The result is a multi-layered effort thatâs very personal, and conveys Elizabethâs message throughout â the desire to connect with another.
âThe songs are about love, of course, the broken heart and the downfalls that Iâve encountered,â she adds, but theyâre also about the other side of it â how to transcend those places. And thereâs always this sort of romantic element as far as meeting the other in that realm, and really being able to have that deep, heartfelt conversation that only two people can have in that space.â
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