STREET SOUNDS: Artist sees the Light

Amanda Rheaume: Light of Another Day

Ottawa chanteuse Amanda Rheaume performs some of the songs off her new CD

Ottawa chanteuse Amanda Rheaume performs some of the songs off her new CD

Eastern road warrior Amanda Rheaume, singer/songwriter/guitarist from Ottawa, lets straight-talking songs guide her way on her fourth album, Light of Another Day.

Recorded in Ontario with an acoustic-based backing group, Light of Another Day brings on country/folk textures by way of Rheaume’s strong, clear vocal, easily interpreted material, and slight electric guitar textures.

Her material is lyrically direct, mainly drawn from travel (given her nomadic, hard-working musical lifestyle) and reflection on new experiences and relationships (On Your Shores).

As a result, the music is as uncluttered and fresh as Rheaume’s voice, which maintains a twang-free inflection throughout the album. This sound gives the songs a strong sense of Canadian regional character (Push On, Shadows of the Past).

In addition to the junk-free  production values, which highlight Rheaume’s voice and songs so easily, there are several collaborations within. These are Be Your Enemy (w/Jeff Pierce), Open Door (w/ David Broadstreet) and Kiss Me Back (w/Holly McNarland).

Given her previous collaborative past with the likes of Chantal Kreviazuk, these songs don’t alter the character of Rheaume’s material, but bring different perspectives from the same solid, acoustic source.

Rheaume’s new record is a well-focused mix of experience and vision set in honest country/rock songs with folk roots.

–– Dean Gordon-Smith is The Morning Star’s music reviewer. His column, Street Sounds, appears every Friday in Arts.