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4.9 out of 5 stars28
4.9 out of 5 stars
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Twelve Stories may be Brandy Clark's debut album but she's been a critically acclaimed songwriter on Nashville's Music Row for eight years now. Her acutely observed songs have been recorded by artists such as LeAnn Rimes, Reba McEntire, The Band Perry, Gretchen Wilson, Keith Urban and Kacey Musgraves. Marty Stuart described her "as one of the greatest writers I've heard in a long, long time".

"Twelve Stories" is an album for grown ups, stylistically, musically, lyrically and conceptually. It is a collection of songs, written or co-written by Clark, woven around a theme of flawed but believable people caught up in sex, substances and sin including arson, abuse and murder.

There are no cliches here; these are lyrics written from the perspective of one who has observed life in all of its complexities with realism laced with wit and dark humour.

Musically it's a winner too with inspired melodies propelled by piano, fiddle, pedal steel and cello. From the poignant "Hold My Hand" and the driving "Stripes" to the gentle "Just Like Him" and the powerful "Hungover" it is a beautifully realised song cycle that is quite mesmerising in its structure and content.

In all senses this is a monumental debut and I am bewitched.
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VINE VOICEon 24 October 2013
I was introduced to Brandy Clark via Bob Harris. Here we have a real country songwriter and the recording is (thankfully) mostly just vocals and minimal instruments. So refreshing.

Brand wrote some of my favourite country songs by OTHER artists and now is her turn!

I just love the songs on this CD, emotional and beautifully sing in her pure and natural style.
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I tried this album on spec. because I loved Brandy Clark's song Follow Your Arrow on Kacey Musgraves' album Same Trailer, Different Park. I was prepared for it not to be very good because quite a lot of people have written one or two good songs and a lot of mediocre stuff, but I was very pleasantly surprised. This is a collection of varied, enjoyable and very well-crafted country songs which tell their stories with humour, insight and genuine pathos at times.

Brandy Clark writes good straightforward tunes and sings them well. They are very well arranged and produced here, with a fine band and just the right degree of arrangement to let each one shine in its own way. Her lyrics are very good indeed, with songs like Take A Little Pill making good, serious points about addiction and Stripes genuinely makes me tap my foot and smile (although I'd recommend that you avoid the video, which manages to drain all the dry wit from the song).

This album was a really enjoyable discovery for me. I think Brandy Clark is a genuinely talented and entertaining singer/songwriter with a rare gift for insight and wit expressed in really enjoyable melodies. I'll definitely be looking out for her future work, and recommend this very warmly.
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on 22 October 2013
If it wasn't for the fact that a friend insisted I watch a Brandy Clark on-line gig a couple of weeks ago, I might have missed this gem of an album as the name "Brandy Clark" has certainly not been on my radar. Not only has Brandy got a great voice and excellent guitar skills but her song writing manages to hit all the right spots with witty and wry lyrics. There is a humour in some songs that could almost be British (and that's a real compliment coming from a Yorkshireman!) That's not to say her subject matter is all "light and fluffy". Not at all. Read some of the lyrics and you'll soon see that she has a handle on real life and has a way of tackling difficult (sometimes ugly) subjects that some songwriters may want to write about but their record labels would certainly avoid. I'm not sure how she's managed to escape being mangled by the Nashville "machine" but this album is a refreshing change from the mainstream. There is a lot to recommend about this album from the catchy "Stripes" through to the heart-wrenching "Take a Little Pill". Do yourself a favour. Download the album, take some time, sit back and listen to what could be the best Country album to come across the pond in a long, long time.
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This is a stunning country album of well written story songs of life. Powerful. Beautifully sung. Perfect backing. It is an album that allows the song to take centre stage and it is those songs that draws the listener into the stories. It is country as it used to be and it could have been made years ago but it is not a retro album. Probably not an album which will produce any single hits and that is a pity but it is an album without a bad track and it deserves repeated listens form start of finish. Highly recommended to those that like the more traditional country sounds or high quality singer songwriter music. Excellent.
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on 1 May 2014
Was tipped off to the this by the indefatigable Mister Willie Morgan, a DJ on CMR Nashville here in the UK. Had been listening to Brandy Clark's mate, Kacey Musgraves album and was persuaded to try this. Loved it from the first hear, just like "Same Trailer, Different Park". Let's hear it from the Worldy wise women of country and roots music
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on 27 February 2014
This is her debut but she has been writing songs for Miranda Lambert and that is good way to start a career. The album is full of great stories about religion, divorce and other characteristic themes in country music. Brandy really brings a fresh approach though. Highly recommended
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on 3 January 2014
Brandy Clark offers an unadorned brand of country music that will appeal to anyone into roots and traditional forms. But her lyrical content is bang up to date, offering a wry commentary on contemporary concerns such as failed relationships and alternative sexuality. Recommended.
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on 8 February 2014
The best record by a female artist since Miranda Lambert's CRAZY EX-GIRLFRENDS,and best country record since Pistol Annies's HELL ON HEELS.Unusal album cover for a country record.Stand out tracks:PILLS,STRIPES & HEAVEN.Buy it.
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on 1 September 2014
Great album from a lesser known singer songwriter from the USA. Funny in places as well as being moving and some infectious tunes. Well worth a punt if you like girl country singers.
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