Never one to avoid eloquence in her musical endeavours, Sofia Talvik has absorbed every American roots influence she could find and has distilled it into the countrified intoxication that is her album “Big Sky Country”.
“Big Sky Country” is, however, rather more than an attempt to attract the attentions of Nashville and the summer festival bookers and, whilst many of the songs are predicated on the resurrected ghost of Americana, she never loses sight of the fact that she is a storyteller at heart.
Therefore, the old school country feel that pervades “Dusty Heart, Empty Hand” is more a stylistic respray of her tried and trusted sensitive style than an affectionate pastiche of someone else’s glories. “Starwalker”, likewise, goes deeper and darker than the usual practitioner of the art of Americana might go and evokes, by the simple mechanism of a chant, the more metaphysical elements of folk music in manner that even Neil Young would approve of. “Bonfire”, on the other hand, is textbook Talvik with emotional fragility providing the motivation for her words whilst “Lullaby” provides further metaphorical reflections on the battlefield of her home territory that is the relationship. Likewise “Fairground” neatly and concisely reprises all that put Ms. Talvik on the menu for the connoisseurs of mature song writing talent.
“Big Sky Country” is the kind of album that literally matures as you listen to it. Who knows but perhaps Sofia Talvik, despite being from Sweden, might be the secret keeper of the crown of real country music? The times, as they say, are changing back towards the truth and the heart, as always, is where it is at.