Songs With Words
“It’s not a surprise that Janet Feder’s musicianship is stunning-a completely original amalgam of traditional technique and avant-leaning accents. She can be favorably compared to Derek Bailey or John Fahey. It isn’t a surprise that her album ‘Songs With Words’ is an audiophile’s dream: it is recorded in surround, using the Sonoma superaudio system. Her albums always sound good, and she is a perfectionist in the live setting as well. It is not a surprise that ‘Songs With Words’ is a musically powerful work of art; Janet Feder is nothing if not thoughtful and receptive. The surprise comes in her beautifully evocative voice, which is debuted on her new album. Janet usually inhabits the rarified world of instrumental guitar geniuses with her contemplative, classically informed compositions, but on ‘Songs With Words,’ she ventures into the vocal realm to great effect. Most startling is her rendition of Dylan’s ‘Blowing In The Wind’ which she takes in new musical directions while keeping the emotional destination intact. What a challenge! Take one of the most recognized and lionized songs in modern music and turn it on its ear, making it your own. A tall order that Ms. Feder pulls off with relaxed aplomb.
Janet’s guitar playing remains a wonder. Her prepared, percussive style is the perfect blend of searching for and then finding home. She explores the outer reaches of sonic possibility yet never loses the thread of melody and beauty. It is so rare to find an artist who achieves this level of technical brilliance on her instrument and can still bring you to your knees with the emotional impact of her performing abilities. ‘Songs With Words’ does just that: it lifts the mind and then holds the heart in that elevated space.” – Paul Epstein, Twist & Shout Records