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CommonUnion59 - Heartbeat Serenade

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CommonUnion59 might call San Francisco, California home, but when Laura Malasig sings "Little White House" on this duo's Heartbeat Serenade, you'd swear she came straight from the Appalachian Mountains. With that said, though, the pair's music is more expansive than just mountain music. Other half, Steve McKenzie, sings this album's title track with a breezy, power pop influenced vocal that is beautifully dreamy. It brings to mind the softer sounds of San Francisco's famed Summer of Love era, from many days past.

The group earns extra credit points for covering Donovan's "Catch the Wind." Sure, its melody owes a big debt to Bob Dylan's "Chimes of Freedom," but it's still a wonderful song. You can tell a lot about a group by the songs they choose to perform that aren't their own, and this is one stellar choice.

This act's folk-ish leanings just warm the heart. It's the kind of music many long to hear, particularly after a long day of thumping EDM and thuggish rap. In contrast, Malasig reminds us all to "Celebrate your life with every breath" during "This Universe." Its lyric is a worthy reminder that we're all connected. Let's learn to get along and love one another. You can laugh about the Summer of Love's excesses, but we could sure use that kind of a love revival right now. Let this album be its soundtrack, in fact.

CommonUnion59 - Heartbeat Serenade
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