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CD REVIEW: Rosa Wallace - Space to be Free
By Cyrus Rhodes - 02/02/2012 - 12:09 AM EST

Artist: Rosa Wallace
Album: Space to be Free
Label: Independent Artist
Genre: Folk
Sounds Like: Dido, Sheryl Crow, K.T. Turnstall
Technical Grade: 8/10
Production/Musicianship Grade: 8/10
Commercial Value: 7/10
Overall Talent Level: 9/10
Songwriting Skills: 10/10
Performance Skill: 10/10
Best Songs: This I Know, All Fall Down
Weakness: None
CD Review: Raleigh North Carolina Singer/Songwriter Rosa Wallace releases her debut 5 song EP entitled “Space to Be Free” in 2011. Reading her bio: Rosa Wallace shows "a touch for story-telling in song," exploring life through her candid narratives by way of warm, robust vocals and rock-influenced finger-picking. Evoking everything from Country to Soul to Classic Rock, this traveling songstress never fails to captivate.

The EP quickly takes flight with Bad Example” an upbeat intro groove that serves up an inviting vocal groove against driving rock rhythm, rocked out guitar and impressive vocals and harmonies from Wallace. Track 2 “This I Know” keeps thing moving in the right direction with its heartfelt vocal delivery, thought provoking lyrical content and moving harmonies and emotions from Wallace. Track 3 “Something So Heavenly” dishes out a slow moving blues ditty with more emotional vocals and harmonies from Wallace that flow and ebb its way through to emotional fruition. I would classify this music as Folksy-R&B with a touch of Pop and Rock. The production quality is impressive providing much in the way of sonic touches, and the musicianship of everyone involved is clearly above the bar. Along the way you will notice lush instrumentation with things like rocked out rhythm section, sizzling solos, slamming guitar chops, combined with impressive acoustic rhythm guitar and lush vocals and harmonies layered everywhere. The rhythm section pushes the natural accents well. Now turning our attention over to Wallace - as for her vocal abilities her voice works well within the confines of this folksy-earthy catalogue. She has several gold standard harmonies and also takes several vocal risks thought the CD indicating to me a strong and confident vocal ability. I suspect some of her vocal influences are – Cheryl Crow, Dido, and perhaps a dash of K.T. Tunstall. Just to name a few. Song for song this is a very “sing-songy” marketable statement from Wallace. Space to be Free” from Rosa Wallace delivers 5 compelling tracks all providing thought provoking wisdom with no holds barred messages that are uplifting, positive yet defiant in nature. From passionate “All Fall Down” to the perfect finale statement “Danger Signs” this 5 song EP has something for just about everyone.

From start to finish “Space to Be Free” by Rosa Wallace delivers the goods and is an impressive collection of music nonetheless. Wallace has a gift to boldly tell the truth through her amazing voice and music thus making a strong emotional connection with listeners. The music is highly passionate, emotional and thought provoking. The songwriting – all songs are consistent musical experiences, each one possessing a unique personality, flair and signature groove. Note for note, song for song this catalogue is rock solid and extremely consistent. The writing and playing abilities of Wallace and her band are rock solid, the melodies and harmonies are brilliant. The lyrical content is packed to the hilt with priceless conventional wisdom. Overall Space to be Free” from Rosa Wallace provides an interesting snapshot of a up an coming talent from North Carolina. I look forward to hearing the full length release hopefully this Summer.  

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