The indie Americana , Oakland-based band T Sisters explore many genres in their second album, "T Sisters." What brings everything together into one solid set list is the impressive vocals of the sisters, Erika, Rachel and Chloe Tietjen. Both individually and through harmonies, their voices shine.
Both at the album's mid-point and close, the sisters show off heir harmony skills through a capella, one of the many unique genres featured here. The somber "And So it Goes" speaks about the passage of time. What's wound will come undone, they sing, and wars will wage on. Although sad in tone, the song takes on an accepting vibe, as if the sisters want to acknowledge that yes, bad things happen, but that's what's inevitable in life. "I Have a Hammer" has a different tone, more hopeful and playful. The sisters clap in the background.
"Shadoop" and "Thief" both have roots somewhere else. "Shadoop" features strong vocals and a frenetic, seductive tone more related to R&B or soul than country. It tells the story of meeting somebody at a party and wanting somebody. "This melody has finally found a song; a love I wanted all along," sing the Tietjen sisters. "Thief" also has similar muscial roots, but takes on a totally different tone. It's the opposite side of the pendulum of the passionate "Shadoop." Whereas the former swoons over the initial attraction, the latter screams about the fighting. It's an emotional plea about an unhealthy relationship in which the man takes more than he gives.
"Make It Rain," a cover originally written and performed by Irish musician Foy Vance, also gives the T Sisters an opportunity to be soulful. They do the original justice, making it their own by making it faster and adding some twang.
Unlike these edgy songs rooted in soul and R&B, "Come Back Down" and "Sonnet #4" are the only songs to take on the classic country genre. They are sweet and not as emotional, but show how the great vocal range of the Tietjens. Whereas one is better suited for lead vocals in something edgy and soulful, another does better with the songs rooted in country.