Inside World Music
“New York-native, Carrington MacDuffie, brings a sense of Americana folk with bluesy, poetic, and lyrical tunes with intimate sensibilities and playful vocal calisthenics. The folksy tunes possess a slight alt-rock and country connotation, but the primary sound is largely folksy blues. The ballad-esque, “Hot Sun Of The Summer,” is a groovy tune with sparkling instrumentation and alt-folk arrangements with a voice akin to Shawn Colvin and Lucinda Williams. “Red Eye” opens with a plaintive acoustic guitar melody and smoky vocal line. There are country and folk strings with swishy percussion. “Stand Below Heaven” is an alt-folk, roots-inspired tune with guitar, drums, and reverberating B3 sounds. Carrington gets serious on “My Favorite Place In Texas” with galloping drums, metallic drones, and heartfelt vocals spacious and delicate. The country-esque tune is quite poetic and very enjoyable. In fact, the entire EP is enjoyable and worth a listen or two.”
“An extremely poetic and elegant listen, MacDuffie is fluent in folk, blues and country sounds, all of which meet here in a playful, calming and sometimes romantic setting. Her lengthy stint as a songwriter is evident with the memorable harmonies and soulful storytelling that permeates every second of this quick EP – an ideal listen for fans of ’70s soft rock up until present day Americana.”
Middle Tennessee Music
“New York native Carrington MacDuffie felt her musical spirit come to life in the Americana scene of Austin, Texas. The result is her new EP, Only An Angel.
A poet and songwriter, Carrington first began writing at age 13. She went to Johns Hopkins to study English/Poetry but she soon took off to Europe to spend 6 months backpacking. When she returned she finished school and joined a fly by night vaudeville group back in New York.
She embraced the vaudevillian art form but the time to move on came once again. MacDuffie headed West to Venice Beach in California where she absorbed the sounds of new wave, World, and new age music. She began experimenting with her writing and performance styles and also received influence from travels through the West Indies.
Making a name for herself in L.A. and Seattle as a spoken word performer, Carrington published a book of poetry as well as an audiobook of spoken word. She carved out a career in voice acting with gigs such as providing vocals for a shamanic Scottish dwarf in World of Warcraft and a private eye in the audio comic Honey West. She continues to receive praises for her lively narrations of works by Harlan Coben, Candace Bushnell, and Paula McClain.
Now in Austin, what else would you expect… it’s only natural Ms. MacDuffie would take her advanced lyrical abilities and combine them with her love of folk music. Austin, Texas is definitely the place to do it.
With her gypsy soul and quick charm, Carrington joins a team of top notch musicians to create a modern folk atmosphere that falls somewhere on the scale between Neil Young and Cat Stevens. There were a few moments, while listening, I felt like I had found a female Jimmy Buffet. Check out ‘Fly Away’ to see what I mean.”
Music Street Journal
“This is quite an intriguing EP. It’s very much set in an Americana style with the predominating sounds here based on country music. Still, there is folk, rock and more. Carrington MacDuffie’s vocals are varied between spoken and sung and work well in either format. I’d like to hear more from this artist because this was just enough to really get me interested in MacDuffie’s music.”
Track by Track Review
Only an Angel
“Percussion starts this. As the other instruments join we get a real Americana vibe with a spoken vocal over the top. When it moves into the song proper MacDuffie sings. This has some cool slide guitar and a lot of country music in the mix.”
“Although this is still quite country in texture, there is an almost Island vibe to it. This has a carefree, fun feeling to it.”
Hot Sun of the Summer
“Dramatic and powerful, this is more or less a rock ballad. It’s not far removed from some of the early music from Suzanne Vega. It’s got a real folk music vibe and comparisons to folk progressive rock wouldn’t be out of the question. I liked the first two songs, but this is even stronger.”
“Folk and bluegrass merge on this effective number. That said, it also has a lot of modern rock sound in it. The vocal line really sells this, but there is some killer instrumental work in it, too.”
Stand Below Heaven
“The organ on this lends a retro texture to the piece. Comparisons to Suzanne Vega wouldn’t be out of the question here, either. That said, this is more of a rocker than most of the set and it’s got plenty of country in the mix, too.”
My Favorite Place in Texas
“This is definitely one of the best pieces here, making it a great choice for closer. It’s got a lot of blues and rock and country music in the mix. It’s an especially effective piece. I like it a lot.”
Huntington News (WV)
Carrington MacDuffie Shines in EP CD
“If you’re a fan of spoken word books, you’re probably familiar with the voice of Carrington MacDuffie, a native New Yorker who makes her home in Austin, TX. You might be surprised to discover that she has a wonderful voice, displayed elegantly in a six-song EP compact disc “Only An Angel”…. If I had to categorize Carrington MacDuffie, I’d say she’s ‘country cabaret.’ I don’t like labels or categories, but she has the intimate sound of a cabaret singer. She would fit right in at the Cafe´Carlyle in New York City’s Hotel Carlyle, where Bobby Short performed for many years. Her songs are poetry set to music and if you like both poetry and music, you’ll like ‘Only An Angel.'”
by Alec Cunningham
“In her new EP Only An Angel, Carrington MacDuffie provides listeners with a warm, timeless voice that never gets old and is able to effortlessly tackle what seems to be any track that stands in her way. It’s a voice that you wouldn’t necessarily expect to come out of her mouth by looking at her, but once you take a listen it’s a sound that you’ll be glad she has. Moreover, the instruments and the style she employees within her songs complement her voice extremely well. Her music is not country per se, but she utilizes a folk twang in her songs that is strengthened by the drawl provided by each song’s electric guitar work.
Not only are her vocals along with the structure of her melodies important aspects of her image as a whole, but perhaps the most important part of her style is her superior writing ability. Her background in poetry and spoken word has aided her in this current project, allowing her to provide six enjoyably emotive and powerfully executed songs for her listeners to relish. Her lyrics are beautifully constructed in a way that many musicians are not able to produce during their career. MacDuffie has honed in on this talent of hers in a way that sounds like an incredibly effortless task.
Track three, ‘Hot Sun of the Summer,’ is a song you won’t be able to get over. It’s catchy and inspiring at the same time. She transports you to a warm, sunny day where the only thing on your mind is spending time with the one you love. She perfectly encapsulates the feelings of a summer love with lines like, ‘And each day was long and clear, blue and hot, and each night felt like it would never stop’ and ‘the world turned, the flame burned, and nothing else mattered.’
Once her final track, ‘My Favorite Place In Texas’ ends, you’ll be sad to have finished the EP already. MacDuffie has the type of captivating sound that will keep you intent on listening and will make you want more once you’re through.
MacDuffie has tapped into the roots of authentic Americana music and has siphoned all of its fortitude and splendor for use in this laid back release suited for anyone to enjoy. You would be hard pressed to label on a few songs from this EP as the most notable because each of them will hold a specific place in your memory. If I had to choose, though, I would name ‘Hot Sun of the Summer,’ ‘Red Eye,’ and ‘My Favorite Place in Texas’ as the three most impressive tracks on this release.