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Jypsi

Jypsi – 2008 (Arista Nashville)

Reviewed by John Lupton

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CDs by Jypsi

There's sometimes a tendency with sibling acts for the "they're so cute" factor to overshadow the question of just how good they are musically. Jypsi features four members of the Rische (rhymes with "dishy") family ranging from 16 to 26 - sisters Lillie Mae, Scarlett and Amber-Dawn joined by brother Frank - who are without doubt a very attractive presence. Though it takes a little while to get it going, their self-titled debut demonstrates that there is indeed some substance to the image as well.

Their publicity touts influences from bluegrass to classic country to Django-style jazz, but the overall sound is a sort of "wall of sound" country rock approach. It's along about the fourth cut, "You Don't Know What Real Love Is" that the fiddles and steel guitar hints start to creep in, and the rest of the disc turns out to be nicely varied and arranged. Lead singer Lillie Mae (the youngest) has a decent set of pipes, and they do play their own instruments and in fine fashion at that. "Halfway Home Cafe" and "Shame On Me" stand out as well. These folks are a good bit more than a family novelty act.