The first thing that strikes you when listening to Denmark’s Lars Mosin’s new album - She’s My Woman - is how pristine and professional the production is. The guitars are shiny and gleaming, the keyboards are appropriate and relevant and every sound is exactly where and what one would expect it to be. Credit is due to producer Francis Dunnery - and it’s important to note Dunnery’s own achievements to appreciate the significance of having him on board.
Dunnery has worked with the likes of Robert Plant, Ian Brown, Lauryn Hill, Santana, Chris Difford (Squeeze) and Anderson Bruford Wakeman Howe. Thus his credentials are impeccable and this professionalism comes across very strongly in the production of She’s My Woman. Kudos also to the musicians working with Mosin here viz. Carsten Falkenlind (Guitars, Keyboards, Vocals), Jens Haack (Saxophone),Tony Beard (Drums), Paul Brown (Bass) and Dunnery himself (Guitars, Keyboards, Vocals). These significant contributions elevate “She’s My Woman” above the typical amateur bedroom recordings that are all too common in this day of affordable digital recording software.
Despite the advantages afforded above, Mosin himself is refreshingly humble and honest about his work - “up until now, it has always been close but no cigar when it comes to getting through the wall of music, but today we stand with She's My Woman in our hands feeling better than ever looking at the bricks now laying on the ground. The album is lounge the kind of music you put on when you wanna relax and feel at ease with yourself, fifty minutes away from the humdrum to regain some energy, ten songs without any bullshit but full of atmosphere, a bit long-haired some would say but frankly I don't care.” Self-effacing words (from Mosin’s bio) that belie that blood, sweat and tears that must surely have been poured into this labor of love.
Mosin describes his music as “lounge music” and that is not too far from the truth. Easy-listening gems that channel the cool vibes of the late 60s/early 70s and artists like Beach Boys, Jimmy Buffett, the Eagles and James Taylor are definite inspirations. The fact that Mosin manages to meld all these influences into a coherent collection of pleasing material is not mean achievement. Some might even argue that the music here is highly nostalgic but when music is put together this well and evokes a certain era so effectively, does it really matter?
For the first half of the album, Mosin and collaborators can do no wrong. From the opening harmony lead guitars that introduce “After All These Years”, its crystal clear where Mosin sets out his stall. Mosin’s excellent voice is the ultimate vehicle of transport that seals the deal - with sympathetic string synths and backing vocal arrangements embellishing the overall effect. Conceptually, the idea of an obsession that continues to resonate even after an extended period of time applies to the album perfectly! The title track - “She's My Woman” - is a delicately delivered ballad, “Family Car” is a sentimental memento, “The Summer Belongs To You” is a dreamy mid-tempo number and “Everyone Can See” is a soulful R&B invocation. Taken together, these songs represent the high points of the album and Mosin’s ability as singer and songwriter.
Whilst the second half is not quite as strong as the first, and there are moments of lazy repetition, there is still enough verve to sustain interest. Overall, She’s My Woman is a superbly executed love letter to the classic singer-songwriter ‘genre’ of the early 70s and fans of that epoch would do well to check Mosin out!
Artist: Lars Mosin
Album Title: She’s My Woman
Review by Kevin Mathews
Rating: 3.5 Stars (out of 5)