April Verch
Take Me Back
(Rounder)
As a child, the Ottawa Valley native won enough fiddling trophies to fill a garage. Her command is in evidence on the instrumentals, as is what separates Upper Canada and Cape Breton. Verch sets toes to tapping, but is less likely than Natalie or Ashley to inspire rhythmic convulsions. On her originals, like “Monarch,” the scent of Grappelli spices things up. For all the prowess in Verch’s fiddling, her singing has room to improve. This enhances “Bride of Jesus,” where tender naivete makes hairs stand up more than if an older, more polished vocalist took it on. On covers of tunes by Julie Miller and Claire Lynch, a lack of vocal projection is less of an asset. Actually, it’s a relief from all the technical fluency.
—Doug Taylor
categories: Canadian artist

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