PeacockSunrise Records (PSR) is an imprint of progressive rock label Melodic Revolution Records (MRR) based in Orlando, Florida, and their first release towards the end of 2019 was the solo album from singer/songwriter Allison vonBuelow. Allison, along with guitarist Gregg Olson formed Echoes Landing back in 2002, which led to the album ‘Closer To You’ in 2006. From there they formed Scarlet Hollow, and their wonderful album ‘What If Never Was’ was released in 2012. Gregg suffered a major stroke the same year, but luckily he has now recovered and here he is providing the part of ultimate sideman with some great electric guitar solos, while drummer Jay Setar (also from Scarlet Hollow) provides drums on one track, while the rest of this is all Allison. Listening to this, one initially is entranced by the vocals, then the lyrics and songs themselves, and by the time one realizes just how complex, dynamic, and powerful the acoustic guitars are one is completely bowled over. When one then has the time to really listen to the bass, the listener is curled up in a ball on the floor asking to be left alone forever and stay inside this world.
Vocally it took me ages to think who Allison makes me think of, and the closest I could come to was Lane Lane, but with a breathier and country style. But and this is a massive “but”, this is not a country and western album, and neither is it a standard singer-songwriter album but has massive amounts of folk within it. I have been blessed I recent years with hearing a large number of great singers and this is yet another album which simply blows me away. It is class, sheer class, and classic. I was talking to label boss Nick Katona this morning and said to him that there is just so much wonderful music out there for those prepared to look for it, and this is yet another fine example. “Perfect Love” sees us move into a more commercial soft jazz style, and although it is probably my least favorite song on the album, it shows yet another facet of a performer who takes us into another world and time altogether. Someone who is not afraid to scat with total control is a singer who has total confidence in their own ability and what they have to offer.
It is a personal album, Allison singing just to the listener, with elements of Kate Bush in the harmonies, which are lush and cascading. It is music out of time, out of place, and so very different indeed to the world outside our windows. Instead of watching the news and throwing things at the TV, I suggest instead you put this on the player and be taken somewhere which is sheer delight. A wonderful album from start to finish.
9/10 Kev Rowland