The reigning queen of country music has a knack for finding a way into the hearts of her global fanbase. It is a warmer and deeper intention, however, that has her latest record reflect on the lesser known gems not previously released as singles. Deep Tracks is a shining collection of Faith’s eloquent and versatile tidings, showcasing her country gravitas, a swirling pool of rich technique and tender ability.
Things kick off with a rolling start, putting the steel guitars and crisp percussion hugs to immediate rush as Better Days allows a glitter in its powerful familiarity (originally off her 1998 record Faith). If I Should Fall Behind details a plucking sincerity and gentle aura. Originally off her Breathe record, it stirs a passionate cocktail of elements that unsurprisingly and subsequently earned her a grammy for best country album back in ’99. A careful sensory indulgence is heard in the track, shedding some light on sun-kissed guitar plucks, airy drum brush filters and her larger than life vocal capacity.
For super fans and those who are not up to scratch with her sound adjustability, a nod to her crossover direction makes a welcomed appearance on the record. Cry, released back in 2002, may have caused a slight divergence from the safer country methods employed by Hill, though in reality, allowed her musically to step into uncharted waters and expose a truer and fuller vocal malleability. Such is the track Free which originally appeared on Cry, and in this instance, serves as more of an adult contemporary move into winsome poppier sounds and a lesser country traditionalism. Despite the shift in sound, it works and works well. The steel guitars have been substituted by guitar fragments perhaps more funk than country, and drum programs suitable for a dancefloor rather than a long interstate highway drive accompaniment. Back To You is another gem off Faith’s Cry album, making another appearance on Deep Tracks as it exercises tastes of R&B, and even a hard rock mentality – working together with her giving singing textures and profound focus.
Faith’s genuine charm has been spell casting many for decades with her signature country filings enthralling even the most diehard country music devotee. Her Deep Tracks record continues this custom, unearthing previously unreleased material as well. Such an impact could be narrowed down to the physical power of Why. A silky piano introduction unfolds to her pearly serenade and hints of western history release into a tonal beauty. It perhaps better showcases the slow tempo, relaxed country components that many have loved and continue to love – bringing another welcoming reason to listen to Faith Hill’s music.