Shaming Of The Sun

Indigo Girls

Epic Records, 1997

REVIEW BY: Duke Egbert


Watching the Indigo Girls develop has been a pleasure. Let's face it: two lesbians who don't sleep with each other but do play folk rock with each other is a recipe for record company exploitation, and it's a tribute to Amy Ray and Emily Saliers that they've managed to avoid that. It's certainly a tribute to how hard they work -- I've never heard a my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 bad Indigo Girls song, and being a fan I've heard a lot of them. They show up, they record ten great songs, they do their thing, they play Lilith Fair, and they go home seperately. Works for them, works for me.

If I sound casual about Shaming Of The Sun, that's because I am. The Indigos have spoiled me. It's a damn fine CD, and I didn't expect any less. But don't assume that this CD isn't different, because it is. There's a lot more electric sound on this, a trend started on their previous CD Swamp Ophelia; at times, the Indigos are damn near a rock band, especially on tracks like "Shame On You", "It's Alright", and "Scooter Boys". (As soon as I figure out what "Scooter Boys" is about, I'll let you know. Meanwhile, it's a darn amusing tune.)

But fear not, acoustic devotees. There are still tunes on here of the "old" Indigos style, two female voices and two acoustic guitars -- worth particular note is "Get Out The Map", with its loping banjo in the background, "Burn All The Letters", and "Everything In Its Own Time".

Most breathtaking to me, however, are two interesting departures from standard Indigos fare -- "Leeds", with its piano and solitary vocal, and the powerful, driving "Caramia", with a lush, orchestrated sound almost reminiscent of '70s symphonic rock. Besides, any song that mentions Harriet The Spy automatically gets several bonus points.

Despite all odds, record company machinations, and preconceptions, the Indigo Girls have become one of the most unique, consistent, and powerful voices in rock music today. It wouldn't surprise me to have them still be listened to in fifty or even a hundred years, as unique voices and unique talents, and as a reflection of their time. You owe it to yourself to find their CDs, and Shaming Of The Sun is a good place to start.

Rating: A-

User Rating: B



© 1999 Duke Egbert and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Epic Records, and is used for informational purposes only.