Australian singer-songwriter Mia Dyson fought through lost bands and relationships and shady management deals to get to where she is now, in The Moment. The album, already critically acclaimed in her homeland, is now coming to American shores to open her up to a whole new audience. It’s an audience that should respond, the one this music may fit best, because while Dyson’s sound has been called “roots”, it’s not stuck in the past but rather full of immediate energy. She can channel the bluesy rasp of Bonnie Raitt and the sheer power of the E Street Band on rollicking tracks like “When the Moment Comes” and “Pistol”, but she can also peel it back into hard-scrabble balladry on “The Outskirts of Town” or the dusty expanse of “Jesse”. Dyson and her band pay tribute to blues and Americana and the history of rock ‘n roll, but they rarely get bogged down in the past. A few numbers here can sometimes feel a bit slick or overbuilt (see “Tell Me” or “Fill Yourself”), which distracts from her fascinating, bittersweet voice. But Dyson’s songs are full of hard-won truths that rarely self-congratulate and are delivered with a reserved yet potent charm. This is the kind of strong new voice that should make a splash, that reminds us about the things we love about rock music while pushing them into new, vibrant territory.
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// Notes from the Road
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