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Deana Carter LIVE on the Sunset Strip
Concert Review By: Chris Macon

Deana Carter took the stage at West Hollywood’s Key Club just after 10pm on a Wednesday night as the opening strains of her soon to be released AC single, "The Girl You Left Me For," mixed with the sounds of hundreds of screaming fans. After ripping through that somewhat pop-punk track, she launched into "One Day at a Time," her current country single which name checks John Wayne, Jesus and Kurt Cobain, to name a few. A fitting return to radio, "One Day at a Time" has a great, refreshing air about it. 

Deana and her top notch (and, surprisingly, newly assembled) band then proceeded to roar through "There’s No Limit," which would be the only track performed off of her I’m Just A Girl record, and "Ordinary," from her latest The Story of My Life record, before reaching the first slowed moment of the evening, the Matraca Berg penned "In A Heartbeat." By nights end, Deana would deliver winning performances of ten of the eleven tracks from The Story of My Life ("Not Another Love Song" was omitted), as well as classics like "Strawberry Wine." 

For me, the real surprise of her set was "Ruby Brown," which appears on her Everything’s Gonna Be Alright record. It’s a great song any way you slice it, but Deana’s distinctive vocals make it truly memorable and even more so in concert. Cleary though, the overall crowd favorite was the ridiculously catchy and wonderful "We Danced Anyway." With its infectious rhythm and lyrics, it is the perfect live song. Also, perfect live, was "Atlanta & Birmingham," a clear standout among the new offerings. On the flip side, "Getting Over You" marked the evening’s sole let down. While the track is fun and clever on the The Story of My Life, it seemed to lack a real punch live. "Sunny Day," which was performed near the end of the set, like many of the night’s performances, escalated into a glorious instrumental playoff.

With a new hair color, new baby, new label, and new music, Deana Carter is knee deep in a rebirth of sorts that, so far as this columnist can tell, is going over resoundingly well. If you haven’t picked up her latest record, by all means, do it now! And, catch her live, will ya?!

Special thanks go out to Vanguard Records and Deana Carter.

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