When Carrie Rodriguez recently indulged the Sings Like Hell audience in a handful of compositions from her then pending Seven Angels on a Bicycle, she more than held her own against the towering musical presence of Chip Taylor. That was certainly no small achievement. And in now perusing the recording in its full and blazing glory, one would have not expected anything less.
From the bewailing contemplation of “Dirty Leather” to the rollicking stomp of “Never Gonna Be Your Bride,” Seven Angels on a Bicycle is a recording of breadth and consequence. As much as the album flourishes in its considered production and evocative songwriting, its real worth lays within Rodriguez’s vocals. In hearing her holler and swoon and inundate us with a myriad of musical temperaments, it is difficult to believe that it took a degree of coaxing by Taylor for Rodriguez to step forth to the microphone. But here she is, fiddle in hand, a book of her own songs tucked confidently under her arm, and singing like hell all over again.