Young Bozeman songwriter Megan Makeever’s latest CD is her third at the tender age of 22. The college grad in musical performance has crafted 12 originals here, in which she conversationally explores the beauty and heartbreak of young love – musical dialogs, if you will.
She mostly plays solo, backing her songs alternately on piano and guitar. She has accompaniment on some songs by viola, cello, and violin (Avery Ballotta, Zach and Hayden Kroff, Jared Wiley and Morgan Saboda).
Makeever possesses an accomplished vocal delivery, navigating between her higher and lower registers, sometimes breathlessly, with ease. I hear traces of singers like Alicia Keys in her style, but without all the fireworks. It’s a relief.
She explores the intricacies of unrequited love in the wistful, aching, “One More Time,” a pretty waltz with piano (“Just ask me to dance one more time, and I promise I’ll let go …” ).
“Outspoken Ego” finds Makeever scorching a lover for immaturity; it’s a slow, bluesy rocker with pouncing piano chords (“I’m not your doormat, I won’t let you walk all over me …” ).
In “All or Nothing,” our heroine lays her feelings out there. Her piano playing perfectly complements the lyrics, building and falling with the emotion in the songs.
“Please Come Home” has soft guitar, accompanied by understated cello and viola, and a surprise vocal duet with noted Bozeman jazz artist Jake Koelzer. “Take a Look” is slow and sad, where she stretches into her higher range on the lyric, the string section playing off the melodic line, piano arpeggios abounding. It’s got a classical nuance, sweetly strident.
“Bliss” has a simple and hypnotic guitar riff, well placed behind the reams of clever lyrics, hypnotizing us like a mantra. The rousing last tune, “Gotta Quit Forgivin’ You,” features added guests, including Jake and Jeni Fleming.
There’s more good stuff here, clean and polished. Check it out at www.meganmakeever.com.
– Mariss McTucker