By Mary Gauthier
The sixth album from the internationally renowned alternative country singer Mary Gauthier, is one comprised of startling truth and honest depictions of a lifelong struggle to come to terms with life as an adoptee. The melancholic lyrical undertones are often reflected through the minimal, country blues instrumentation; as much of the music falls together with ease and beauty, creating an engaging musical tale, with influences clear from country legends such as Steve Earle and Lucinda Williams. Alongside her prominent, syllabic vocals, folk violin and guitar styles penetrate the core of 'The Foundling,' as well as unsuspecting trombone melodies add a charming, upbeat jollity to the otherwise rather downtempo album.
The title track is particularly engaging, with the violin melodies beautifully complimented by the atmospheric accordion, ultimately suggesting an influence from Spanish and French musical styles; all of which fuse together very successfully to create a climatic, powerful representation of her life story. Tracks such as 'Goodbye' are a little less accomplished, and lack the sombre tones that make many elements of this album so powerful, but the album does remain brutally honest and strong throughout. This is definitely a must for any alternative country fan, and certainly will tug at the heart strings of anyone willing to empathise with the difficult life of Mary herself.