Jodie Marie : Trouble in Mind2015 : StudioOwz
Trouble in Mind, Jodie Marie's second release, is an elegiac record, full of heart rending blues and soul. It follows on, with dramatic maturity, from her accomplished but more folk influenced 2012 debut, Mountain Echo.
Listen to both albums in order and you will be left with a sense that the songwriting talent and voice have always been there, what is new is an emotional depth and honesty that make the music utterly compelling.
Recorded mainly in Pembrokeshire (her home) Trouble in Mind opens with an authentic, emotive slow blues love song, I Need Someone, which showcases Jodie Marie's range, control and intensity. Following on the next track, Only One I'm Thinking Of, has swing and summer hope in its horn section and light-hearted vocal.
The blues of If We Try opens with the line 'It's been a heartache for a long, long time', and although it really hasn't been lyrically so far these words set the tone for the rest of the album. If We Try is a heartfelt plea to a lover, and the one-sided love theme carries into title track Trouble in Mind - an effective, simple arrangement of voice and acoustic guitar.
Reason to Believe is an expressive cover of a Tim Hardin song with Jodie Marie alone on piano. It is a lovely reading of the song - followed by For Your Love with it's aching refrain 'Oh, I am desperate now for your love, for your love'. Properly emoted despair has seldom sounded so good to listen to.
Everyone Makes Mistakes is the keystone of the whole collection - with keyboard and muted band backing her voice takes flight for the chorus and it is completely spellbinding; a magnificent song.
I Miss You is back to piano and pain, and a subtle jazz feel, leading into I Still Care (Pt ii & i): a quiet coda (judging by the numbering) and then a swinging Southern soul number.
The album closes with Later Than You Think, which has just a hint of rock in its finale swagger.
Trouble in Mind has been lovingly arranged and produced, the instruments often just underpin or frame Jodie Marie's voice - which is more than capable of leading the songs, it is a marvel.
Much was made, around the time Mountain Echo, of the chance discovery of Jodie Marie's talent and her signing to Decca. It makes a great back story, but the truth is often more prosaic than random luck plucking someone from obscurity: she has a truly exceptional talent - it is certainly fully displayed on this album, which is a genuine revelation.
JODIE MARIE I Only One I'm Thinking Of
JODIE MARIE I Who Knows Where the Time Goes
(A Sandy Denny cover - not featured on Trouble in Mind, but included here as it is a fantastic rendering of a great song)