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Olivia Chaney's 'Longest River' album flows with distinctive beauty

Olivia Chaney's 'Longest River' album flows with distinctive beauty

Olivia Chaney, "The Longest River" (Nonesuch). On its surface, the debut album from the British folk singer Chaney, released in April, is a simple affair. Featuring her graceful hand-picked acoustic guitar and piano work and a small backing band of strings and bass, "The Longest River" highlights an artist with a voice in harmony with rich traditions and eager to add her own pure-toned phrased accents. Below the surface, though, lay grim complications. At her Los Angeles debut at the Hotel Cafe last year, Chaney teased songs from "The Longest River." Joni Mitchell's earliest records were one obvious touchstone, as was the work of Sandy Denny-era...

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