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February 2, 2023

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Amanda Rogers
The Places You Dwell (Immigrant Sun Records)

By: Scott D. Lewis

A few years ago, the very night I moved into a new apartment, I had the distinct feeling of being visited to a ghost. Rather than freak-out, I wished her to stay (the vibe I got was decidedly female) since I felt strongly that this particular ghost would make for rather fine company. Maybe it was Amanda Rogers. Rogers, who is very much among the living, casts odd little spells with her piano and slightly unsteady voice and seems to see the world in captivating green light. She plays a trick right off on The Places You Dwell, putting an tinny, ear-stinging a cappella song in the poll position as if to do away with any listeners lacking patience. Then she lets her curious magic fly. With strings, keyboards and guitars supporting her piano, Rogers' hand-crafted songs become dramatic small symphonies which are capped off by her reedy, sometimes shaking voice. It's the sound of an exposed nerve that's only begun to heal itself and it lends the nine "real" tracks a sense of immediacy and a wealth of fascination. Just like I wasn't willing to pressure my ghost or think to hard about her visit, I'm inclined to leave the dissecting of Rogers' music to others (other than stating that you've likely never heard such a beguiling version of [You Are My] "Sunshine") and simply bask in the green glow of this peculiar gem.
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