Kate & Anna McGarrigle, 'Tell My Sister' (Nonesuch)

Tell My Sister
Critical Mass
Release Date: May 29, 2011
Label: Nonesuch

by Andrew Hultkrans

These Québécois sibs were singer-songwriters of sophisticated folk music cribbed from Irish and French-Canadian traditions, and their first two albums -- 1975's self-titled debut and '77's Dancer With Bruised Knees (compiled here plus demos and unreleased tracks) -- influenced everyone from Emmylou Harris to Nick Cave. The McGarrigles' songs are deceptively simple, but their inventive arrangements, unpredictable harmonizing, and hints of chanson reveal an eccentric genius.

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