Martha Berner and the Significant Others: Fool’s Fantasy
(Pop Rock Records)
The first things you notice on Fool’s Fantasy, the new release from Chicago’s Martha Berner and the Significant Others is how quickly her dusky alto draws you in with an easy, familiar air.
Reminiscent of Natalie Merchant and Margo Timmins, Berner has allied herself with a group of fantastic players to back up her musical dreams with depth and skill. Scott Fritz leads the “Significant Others” as the albums producer and with his tasty guitar, adding just the right amount of twang and burn to be a perfect foil to Berner’s dynamic vocals. As the album unfolds you realize there is more to this than your average alt country record as Will Sprawls adds fine keyboard playing and Tyson Ellert gives clever percussion accompaniment to Berner’s fine folk pop songbook.
Highlights include the infectious “Brave,” the classic country train beat of “Cry,” and the rocking “People Are Crazy.” Let’s hope it doesn’t take Berner another six years for this fine singer songwriter to make another album now that she has her Significant Others.