Mary Chapin Carpenter - The Age of Miracles

Mary Chapin Carpenter – The Age of Miracles
(Released April 27, 2010)

The sound of Mary Chapin Carpenter’s latest album, The Age of Miracles, is a vast countryside with rolling hills - a spring breeze through prairie grass – a simple place where profound answers have been found in solitary exploration.

After surviving a life-threatening pulmonary embolism in 2007, Carpenter’s collection of songs for The Age of Miracles reflects her thankfulness for the life she continues to live, her apprehension in living meaningfully, and her crossing the boundary into hopefulness.  It’s a journey that Carpenter has taken us on before, but not perhaps with as much tender perspective as with this collection.

Not all of the songs on the album are autobiographical, but the standouts speak to Carpenter’s internal travels and the lessons learned through them.  These are especially illustrated in the “feeling tethered and learning to fly again” message of “Zephyr,” the overcoming of fear and recognition of life’s gifts in “Holding Up the Sky,” and the exquisitely crafted gratitude for being fully present in “Iceland”:

“Don’t look back, the spirits cry
Just be glad to be alive
Everything that you love is right here
Everything that you love…”

Those looking for a departure from her deeply personal and poetic work of the past decade, wanting a retreat to the early, colorful country pop, will be disappointed.  Carpenter has moved into a quiet, soulful room of introspection and seems to have found her place of comfort there.

The Skinny:  This album is Mary Chapin Carpenter doing what she does best with the expected emotional aplomb.

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