Review by Bobby Jo Valentine

Artist: Diane Dandeneau
Album: What Would You Do If You Knew You Were God?
Review by Bobby Jo Valentine, Award Winning Singer/Songwriter and Music Reviewer

Diane Dandeneau approaches music with a purpose in her debut album “What Would You Do if You Knew You Were God.”  Mixing folk-styled standards with positive uplifting messages, Diane has put together a collection of songs filled with honesty, charm, and depth.  The guitar parts are solid, the percussion is creative and bright, and the lyrics have moments of both sweetness and depth. For listeners looking for a pleasant listen and uplifting lyrics, Diane’s new album serves them up a musical meal that will delight and enchant.

Diane displays some wonderful wisdom and great vocal harmonies in “One Heart of Man,” a story about the unified spirituality of the human race.  I’ve gone to the ends of the earth/In search of who I am/and what I found were a million mirrors/to the one heart of man.  All of the lyrics are solid, the observations are honest, and Diane’s pure and honest vocals tell the listener that this is a song that Diane hasn’t just written; it is a story that she has experienced.  Pleasant, well arranged, and powerful, “One Heart of Man” is one of the highlights of the album.

“12 String Guitar” is a sweet, catchy story-song about being in love with music and the tendency that life has to take people away from doing what they love.  Diane tells the story of coming back to music after a long hiatus, and realizing that it was what she wanted to do with her life, and proves it with a wonderful rolling Irish rhythm, and another great song.  A profound question is asked in “What Would You Do If You Knew You Were God,” an interesting moral tale wrapped in a medieval rhythm and more positive messages about life and its mysteries.  The dance with the darkness allures and appears to be the way of the world and its fears.  When you shine the light on the truth, you realize that it’s all a ruse.

The album flows smoothly through the different stories, and maintains a good quality and a pleasant sound throughout.  “Don’t Be Afraid of Love” is a beautiful, haunting lullaby about not running away from love.  There are some wonderful instrument pieces here, with a mandolin plucking away in the background, and a haunting, deep bass sound in the distance.  “She Played Her Guitar” is a quirky, fun biography about the life of a singer/songwriter and the difficulty of getting noticed in a world where the gap between famous and unknown is often large and uncrossable.  She plays her guitar for the dogs/now that the cat is dead and gone/they usually sleep right through the songs/while the neighbor dog sings along.  The song ends with a confident and uplifting invitation to play despite the number of people who may or may not hear you.

All the tracks are pleasant, but a few more stick out as memorable and noteworthy.  Diane shows some great songwriting skill in “Quilts,” a wonderful and haunting piece of poetry about the simple beauties and struggles of a typical family’s life.  “Quilts” has a great introduction, with a guitar being finger-picked and soft cymbal accents bringing the listener into a story of local gossips gathered around in a sewing circle.  Diane observes each patch and sewing project, their details giving clues to what’s actually going on in the clothing-wearer’s lives.  Beautiful, soft, and emotionally profound, “Quilts” is easily the best track on the album.  “The Bond That’s Called Love” is another haunting and uplifting tune, with an Irish guitar rhythm and Diane’s lyrics taking the listener through a tale of love that goes deeper than a contract or approval form.  Addressing issues of sexual discrimination gently, but firmly, Diane speaks with strength and conviction.

Diane has accomplished a great feat in this album; She teaches principles and spiritual lessons without wandering into territory too familiar, or using lyrics that the listener has already heard before.  Focused, gentle, pleasant, and genuine, “What Would You Do If You Knew You Were God” will be sure to attract new fans to the inspiring work of Diane Dandeneau.

Review by Bobby Jo Valentine
Rating: 4 stars (out of 5)


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