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Krystal Keith, ‘Krystal Keith’ – EP Review

Krystal Keith EP
Show Dog Universal

Krystal Keith proves she has the talent to make it in Nashville, but a larger sample is needed to distinguish her as her own artist. At her best she’s Bonnie Raitt for a new generation — but at other times her style, pacing and lyrics are too heavily influenced by Toby Keith.

Papa Keith co-produced the EP and her upcoming full-length, ‘Whiskey and Lace.’ Plus he helped write three of the four songs on ‘Krystal Keith.’ ‘Can’t Buy You Money’ — from Toby’s 2006 ‘White Trash With Money’ album — is Krystal’s finest moment. The arrangement cradles her big, bluesy voice. She shows range but doesn’t sacrifice personality to prove she can hit all the high notes.

‘Doin’ It’ opens the EP (available now) with a shuffling guitar lick that sets the tone for a frisky first three songs. It’s another fine vocal performance, but during lyrics like “Granny’s got an eight-track down in her Bonneville,” her run up the scale is a replica of something Toby would do. The similarities are more flagrant on ‘What Did You Think I’d Do.’ She falls off the last word of the chorus much like Toby does on ‘I Like Girls That Drink Beer.’ Stories aside, the two recordings are very similar in their staccato delivery.

‘Daddy Dance With Me’ is the most unique of the four. The touching daughter-to-father ballad was co-written by Krystal and it has all the touchstones of a big wedding tearjerker. It’s an original point of view, but more importantly an original moment as an artist. More like it will be needed on ‘Whiskey and Lace’ to define Krystal Keith as her own talent.

3 Stars

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