Tanya Donelly and the Parkington Sisters: Tanya Donelly and the Parkington Sisters (American Laundromat) | Under the Radar - Music Magazine
Sunday, March 7th, 2021  

Tanya Donelly and the Parkington Sisters

Tanya Donelly and the Parkington Sisters

American Laundromat

Aug 24, 2020 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share

Tanya Donelly spent her COVID quarantine releasing a series of cover songs on her Bandcamp page of artists such as The Rolling Stones, Bob Marley, Pixies, and Robyn Hitchcock, among others. With her new album, recorded with piano, guitar, and strings (violin, viola, cello) courtesy of The Parkington Sisters, her covers project continues.    

In a word, Tanya Donelly and the Parkington Sisters is sublime. The Parkington Sisters, who in their own right have a couple albums and EPs to their name, provide orchestral accompaniment to each of the nine tracks here, and their contribution is essential to the overall tone and tenor of the record. Which is to say that, while the songs here are not unfaithful to the originals, the interpretations are transformative. The Go-Go’s’ “Automatic” is turned into a haunting lament. The Kinks’ “Days” is playful whimsy. Echo & the Bunnymen’s “Ocean Rain” is sweeping and lush. “Different Drum,” initially made famous by Linda Ronstadt’s The Stone Poneys, is jaunty and playful. And Donelly’s voice, combined with the alluring strings on Leonard Cohen’s “Dance Me To the End of Love,” is absolutely enchanting.    

If there’s a gripe here, it’s in the album’s brevity. At nine songs and a hair over 34 minutes, Tanya Donelly and the Parkington Sisters could very easily have been longer. But sometimes conciseness is also a positive. By the time the album’s final song—a perfectly sparse version of Mary Margaret O’Hara’s “You Will Be Loved Again”—reaches its conclusion, the listener is left wanting more and more. Let’s just hope there is a volume 2. (www.tanyadonelly.bandcamp.com) (www.parkingtonsisters.com) (www.alr-music.com)

Author rating: 7.5/10

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