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Olive Drab

Songs Rarely Ever Sung – 2002 (Olive Drab Music)

Reviewed by Brian Steinberg

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CDs by Olive Drab

This small band from Smallwood, N.Y. is a little hard on itself. There's nothing drab about this colorful blend of country, folk and rock, and there's absolutely no reason why these songs shouldn't be warbled more than just once in a while. Charlene McPherson's voice is clear and direct and sounds just right whether the song makes you want to tap your toe ("Wanna Believe") or laugh out loud ("When I'm Skinny"). Tight interplay among guitarist Mo Goldner, bassist Lyle Scott and drummer Josh Weingust make things sound like Johnny Cash's Tennessee Three in front of a campfire - albeit with a souped-up, modern sound.

If No Doubt's Gwen Stefani had a yen for Hank Williams or Jason Ringenberg she might model herself on the sound of Olive Drab. Congrats on melding country tradition with pop smarts without going overboard. (Olive Drab Music, 845-583-6272)