Consisting of singer Connie Lynn Petruk, who plays drums on her alligator-skin suitcase and adds some rather hypnotic rhythms to proceedings by tapping her tambourine and song-writer/singer Christmas Davis, The Tall Pines' latest collection, the Fear is the Devil EP, proves once and for all just why the world, and the music industry, need the folk-rock this duo regularly deliver.
Opening number, EP title track "Fear Is The Devil" is by far the stand-out, a powerful almost ghost-like, eerie vocal, combined with slick and sharp but simple instrumentation means the song is hard to get out of your head even long after it's finished.
"Hooked On You" is more rock-led; a clearer vocal performance working almost perfectly with the tambourine in particular. It might be a little slow for some, but it's certainly not a bad number by any means. "Sister Rose" meanwhile is quite psychedelic and might work well when played in clubs, but against the tracks that have come before it, it struggles somewhat.
Slowing things down once more, "Ten More Miles" shows off Petruk's vocal abilities and it is those alone that truly make the track worthy of more than just a single listen. Following on from that is "Mexico", the closest thing to a ballad on the six track collection, and, as a result, it feels very much out of place. With that said, the simple instrumentation together with an emotive vocal makes it a strong addition to the EP and one which listeners hopefully won't instantly dismiss if it doesn't live up to expectations.
Having been very much in the background up until this point. Davis then gets his moment in the spotlight with "The Traveler." It's hard to ignore the distinct differences between his own vocal style and that of Petruk, and where it might not work in certain situations or on certain songs, it does so here and as a result, the EP is closed out on a somewhat subdued, but suitably impressive note.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vm3nSRuw1bQ