The opening Get It Over might lead you to expect another Cranberries or Murmurs because of the strong female lead vocal and folk-electric mood and arrangement.
But Invisible Boyfriend will take you by surprise if thatís the case, because the lead vocals are male and the whole approach of the project seemingly changes. Highway of the Saints mixes the sexes harmonically, while Mezzanine sounds like John Hiatt has joined the group.
Mixed Messages features both women in the band sharing vocals, but I donít know which is Vicki Peterson and which is Susan Cowsill. Thatís right, Cowsill. One has a sadder, more emotional delivery, and Iíd bet itís Cowsill, one of the survivors of the Ď60s family band that inspired the Partridge Family TV show.
Thereís a bit of an amateur, garage-band feel to these Drifters at times, but in a positive way, as though they recognize how much polish is necessary for each song and see no need to go beyond that point. I Canít Make It Alone is a case in point, with its slightly rough edges adding to its charm, not detracting.
Some of Shelleyís Blues is an old Mike Nesmith tune from his Monkee days, but featuring a burning slide guitar and female country-style vocals.
The set ends with the country-rock feel of A Song for You, written by the late Gram Parsons in 1973. Peterson lays down a think and slick guitar solo between verses.
Thereís a warmth and diversity to this recording that grows on you with the repeated listening as it wends its way through rock, pop, and country. Rating B+