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Tara Jane O'Neil
In Circles
Quarterstick Records

Tara Jane O'Neil beads the dreamy country/folk esthetics of Joni Mitchell, Mary Black, and Ani Difranco into her Bohemian raptures, finely ribbing her fourth album In Circles with a silky sonorousness. There is blissfulness in the acoustic gossamer of the instruments and a beatific grace in O'Neil's registers. Her vocal melodies take the shape of the elysian-sloped guitar strums, and chime with a divine resonance that hallows the instrument parts.

Tara Jane O'Neil is a niche artist whose album In Circles offers gorgeous instrumental coloring and vocal glosses caped in a demure nakedness. The themes in her songs display the beauty of wounds and blessings, inclusively eulogized in a becalming voice and instruments rotating in an elliptical shape. Her songs have a Zen-like essence and a peaceful elegance with a Shawn Colvin fluency. The airy instrument lifts on "Primer" are speckled with bell sounding synths while the country/folk tangent of the guitar strums for "A Partridge Song" recline with a Casey Chambers restfulness. The acoustic orientations of the melodies are enhanced by interludes of synths and floating vocal phrases. The simplicity and ruminative nature of O'Neil's songs present an airy tonality lathered in delicate sounds and a rustic guitar panoramic.

"The Louder" ventures into darker toned guitar plucking reminiscent of Laura Cantrell while the airiness of the flute patterns on "A Sparrow Song" are stylized by folk-encrusted guitars, tambourines, and keyboard intervals. O'Neil delves into multiple tonalities on tracks like "A Room For These" and "Blue Light Room" with lowlights of keyboards at the base of the song and mid-lights of guitar and percussions illuminated by highlights of dusky vocal glides. The ligaments are smooth as the havens of tones are melded into heavenly calm and softly channeled instrument ramps. The motions are artistically handled like the instrumental pieces fanning "Fundamental Tom" and "This Beats" propagating instrument sections that glow greater with each composite of billowing successions. The notes are gradually blended into each other until they bloom fully and then disperse into splintering shards.

Tara Jane O'Neil, whose journey began in her hometown of Portland, Oregon and has consisted of being in such underground bands as Rodan, Retsin, and Sonora Pine, as well as starring in the indie film Half-Cocked, has emerged into a prosperous solo career starting in 2000 with her debut album Peregrine. In addition to being an accomplished singer and songwriter, O'Neil is also an acclaimed painter and music composer for theatre and short films. Her songs are deemed as sound art with an acoustic environment framing her blissful vocals. Her duets are with nature as she sings with birds on "A Sparrow Song" and "The Partridge Song" and the Pacific Ocean on "The Louder." Her music has an ethereal beauty and a nakedness that joins simplicity and free flowing harmony with the celestial bodies that inhabit nature.

-Susan Frances

Track Listing:
1. Primer
2. A Partridge Song
3. The Louder
4. A Sparrow Song
5. A Room For These
6. Blue Light Room
7. Need No Pony
8. Fundamental Tom
9. The Looking Box
10. This Beats

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