A very nice debut, indeed; this first offering from Mark Rogers and Mary Byrne, who hail from Pennsylvania, but met in East Atlanta through the growing music scene. Having moved to Brooklyn, they married and after the nightmare of Hurricane Sandy in 2012, began working on their first collaboration, which became this album. I Line My Days Along Your Weight is a keeper; it’s bare-boned and stripped down – just acoustic guitars and the very warm and tuneful voice of Mary Byrne.
“When Your Elders Are Tall” is a striking and melodic piece, wrapped in minor chords and about as strident as this gets – very tightly wound guitar strokes and a passionate, yet restrained vocal delivery. “A Racing Heart” begins with just Mary Byrne’s whisper-y voice, then starts to grow into an acoustic backing with some sweetly tender and restrained (finger-picked sounding) notes and fills. What makes this track particularly interesting is the slightly skewed way the riffs go at the song’s end; that is to say, it works well. A standout track, without question. “A Gracious Host” is a story-song with some deft acoustic slides that fit the tension in the structure. “Walk With Me” immediately reminded me of the early Pentangle – I can almost imagine Bert Jansch’s acoustic figures fitting in alongside Mark Rogers’ and Mary Byrne does sound like Jacquie McShee on this; her vocals have that kind of lilt (and sound even richer by being double tracked) – and the music itself has an Emerald Isle feel.
This is truly a wonderful record; in a word, a keeper. Check it out – you’ll be instantly absorbed by I Line My Days Along Your Weight.
I Line My Days Along Your Weight is available now