Miss Tess

“Darling, Oh Darling” review by Holly Hughes

Her stylized songs – both tongue-in-cheek toe-tappers and campy strolls – are a hoot, but the numbers that really won me over were more mainstream tracks, songs that prove she’s got substance as well as style. There’s the title track, “Darling Oh Darling,” a yearning two-step with poetic lyrics like “There’s a beating heart under my skin / It took all I had just to let you in / Tonight,” sung against a plangent pedal steel. The lilting “Love” is a tuneful (and refreshingly upbeat) meditation on the fleeting nature of romance. “Awake,” with its brooding dissonances and wistful banjo shuffle, crystallizes an almost existential moment between waking and sleeping. She’s got a wonderful ear for melody, whether it’s a catchy upbeat number or a haunting slow song; her tunes take surprising turns, but it doesn’t take long before you find yourself humming along.

Credit must also be given to Miss Tess’s backing band – a lean but multitalented ensemble that includes Paul Dilley on upright bass, Gillian DeLear on drums, and the marvelous Alec Spiegelman on just about any woodwind instrument you could ask for. Spiegelman’s clarinet in particular lends extraordinary texture to several tracks – when was the last time a clarinet trill made you laugh out loud?

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Miss Tess & The Bon Ton Parade will be performing at the Walnut Room March 25th w/ Sugar Moon

Miss Tess – “Riding Home”

The Walnut Room is Denver’s premiere American-Pizzeria, serving up great food, affordable drinks, and today’s best live music. Be sure to visit us at both Walnut Room locations.

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3131 Walnut Street
Denver, Colorado 80205
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