CD Review: Megan Slankard “A Token of the Wreckage”

When you start getting tired of the same old stuff on the radio, you start looking for those artists that could easily have their songs played on the radio if the industry wasn’t so set in their ways of promoting the same tired artists. One particular artist that should be making a lot more noise in the music industry right now is San Francisco singer-songwriter Megan Slankard.

Megan Slankard had been making music for the better part of a decade, during which she has self-released four CDs of original music, the last of which, A Little Extra Sun, was released back in 2005. The latest release from Megan Slankard is the 2011 album A Token of the Wreckage.

A Token of the Wreckage from Megan Slankard is one of the albums that once you hear it, you can’t believe that you’ve never heard of the artist before. The twelve song release from Slankard is as good as anything that the major labels have released in the last ten years or so.

To help create her latest album, Slankard is joined by multi-instrumentalist Danny Blau who added guitars, keys and other instruments to the album; guitarist James Deprato; bassist Jeff Symonds; drummer Kyle Caprista; as well as producer Jerry Becker and mixer Dave Bryson, who each added much more than their technical expertise to the album, as they both contributed musical talent, as well.

The newest release from Megan Slankard begins with the title track of the album. “A Token of the Wreckage” is a solid song that features a slow but strong spirit in its music. The quiet keyboards that lead into the song help give the album a great starting point. Slankard and the band create a song that has a lot of energy, despite the slow tempo. While the song does go over five minutes, it is also one of the best tracks on the release.

The four-minute playing time for the track “Fair Enough and Farewell” makes it a lot easier to promote the second song of the release as a single. The strong feel of the music and the beautiful vocals of Slankard on this track make it one of the commercial of the album, and one of the best songs from 2011.

After the first two songs on the newest album from Megan Slankard turned out to be so strong, it’s such a pleasant surprise that the album doesn’t slow down with the third track. “Our Little Secret” is a song that has that type of feel to it that almost definitely screams “single”.

It is on the fourth song that the tempo of the album A Token of the Wreckage from Megan Slankard finally slows down a bit. The song “The Tragic Life of Caleb” plays like a note to a special someone as the writer contemplates her own life and what will happen after it ends.

“My Obsession with Bees” is one of the most infectious songs on the album. The music of the song contains one of the most beautiful guitar parts on the release. The guitar solo will really pull you in.

“The Happy Birthday” is the one song on the album that makes you consider what Megan Slankard’s music would sound like if someone else would record it. The steel guitar and mandolin give the song a definite folk feel to it. The song has enough of a folk music style to it that it would lend itself well to the playing of Allison Krauss and Union Station.

The album returns to a more rock feel with the song “The Pain of Growing Up”. The song about living your life while trying to hold onto your dreams is something that everyone can relate to, no matter how old you are.

“You and Your Bright Ideas” comes late in the album, though that just proves how strong the album is when a song this strong has to be placed second from last in the playlist. The song is one of the strongest tracks on the album and it gives you a nice reward for listening to the whole album.

A Token of the Wreckage, the newest album from Megan Slankard, has many songs that will catch your ear. The album will also make you look at the independent music scene and wonder why more artists like Megan Slankard haven’t made it in the music industry yet.

Check out the video to “A Token of the Wreckage” HERE.


1 Comment

  1. Megan Slankard is the real deal! I have had several house concerts with her and everyone loves this beautiful songbird! She is mezmorizing…a true musician/songwriter and a delightful showgirl! Don't miss her when she comes to your town! 

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