Russell, Allison / Returner, The
Album: Returner, The   Collection:General
Artist:Russell, Allison   Added:Feb 2024
Label:Fantasy Records  

A-File Activity
Add Date: 2024-03-03 Pull Date: 2024-05-05
Week Ending: May 5 Apr 28 Apr 21 Apr 14 Apr 7 Mar 31 Mar 24 Mar 17
Airplays: 5 2 3 2 2 3 1 1

Recent Airplay
1. Jun 01, 2024: Hanging in the Boneyard
Stay Right Here
4. May 10, 2024: KZSU Time Traveler
Eve Was Black
2. Jun 01, 2024: Music Casserole
Stay Right Here, Demons
5. May 08, 2024: That's not Bluegrass
The Returner
3. May 14, 2024: Traditions
6. May 07, 2024: Traditions

Album Review
Francis D
Reviewed 2024-02-22
“The Returner” Allison Russell
Allison Russell’s sophomore release. Weaves blues, gospel, roots and jazz into ten “genre-fluid” tracks. Following the raw, cathartic storytelling in her “Outside Child” debut, this is a truly joyful celebration—a testament to her strength and resilience. Russell’s vocals are exquisite, supported by what she calls her “Rainbow Coalition” ensemble of singers. Russell also plays jazz clarinet on a handful of the tracks, as well as the banjo. The arrangements are full and rich, with piano, synth, guitar and strings. RIYL: Lana Del Rey, Kara Jackson, Yola, Pointer Sisters.
— Francis

Highly recommended: 6, 5, 2, 10, 4, 3. No FCCs detected.

1. (4:11) Springtime — Deliberately paced, lighthearted opener. Starts with strings, laughter and a choir. Builds into a fully orchestrated jazzy number.
2. (3:51) The Returner — Soulful, bluesy and joyous. Gospel choir. Lovely strings. Lap steel guitar added in the lead break. ****
3. (3:13) All Without Within — Uplifting groove. Fun, syncopated beat. Synths and guitar. Highly danceable Philly soul feeling. **
4. (4:29) Demons — Sassy, gospel-like revival track. With rich harmonies, it’s reminiscent of jazzy, soulful Pointer Sisters compositions. ***
5. (6:04) Eve Was Black — Grammy-winner for best American roots performance. Russell’s picked banjo over a dynamic soundscape with a persistent beat, which begins spare and builds throughout. Dramatic shift with about a minute left to a banjo-forward trail-out, with French vocals. ****
6. (4:10) Stay Right Here — Thumping, bumping beat, piano, strings and energetic, engaging vocals. Very radio-friendly. The first single. ****
7. (4:13) Shadowlands — Spirited, swaying and soulful with harmonized vocals, piano, guitar and synths.
8. (3:04) Rag Child — Another gospel tune with choir-like vocals and standout piano, set to a steady beat.
9. (4:38) Snakelife — Halting and a bit ominous. Walking rhythm with the bass and drums working in tandem. Tinkling piano and effects in lead break.
10. (6:14) Requiem — Gloriously hopeful, acoustic anthem. An affirmation. Marvelous harmonies. A hint of piano and synth. Lovely, sweeping washes of sound. ***

Track Listing
1. Springtime   6. Stay Right Here
2. The Returner   7. Shadowlands
3. All Without Within   8. Rag Child
4. Demons   9. Snakelife
5. Eve Was Black   10. Requiem