Nettie Rose’s voice is tailor made for the folk genre. Acoustic guitar instrumentation delivers listeners to a bygone era with vivid imagery of flower children dominating the landscape. Santa Monica’s Nettie Rose offers a soft and enjoyable album for female-lead folk fans.
“Highway” features a story of love. The song has a plodding melody line that fits a classic country billing. “I’m lost for words. I don’t know what to say. You found your salvation. You gave it away. When you’re down and out, I’ll love you anyway.” It’s a true country song.
Nettie’s spirited “Ride, Ride, Ride” has a bit more of an upbeat tone to it. Her vocals seem to work well with the upbeat tune. Again singing about a man, Nettie’s focused on a more mysterious protagonist here; he’s a dark criminal. “All I wanna do is ride.” Probably the most complicated song on the album, there’s some particularly clever writing regarding the words of the main character. He maintains a classic western hero image throughout the song.
The guitar picking on “For My Young Lord Drake” is quite enjoyable. It leads into Nettie’s folksy vocals, which feel quite warm. Probably the best song on the album, this song seems like a quintessential “cowboy” song. The meandering melody is catchy and fun. Though I can’t be certain if it was written about the past, it seems to have an old time flavor (in a good way).
The accordion beginning of “To the West” is endearing. The instruments really come together on this song. The lyrics describe an intriguing man, again relatively mysterious. The song is a dream of moving westward, definitely from a long-past era.
Nettie’s work will be enjoyable for fans of Ani Difranco, Brandi Carlile, and similar female folk artists. Her songwriting follows a theme about mystery, men, and the west. It will be interesting to follow Rose’s career as she continues to develop her folksy vocal style.