South Dakota native Layne Putnam has music in her blood. The talented young singer/writer is the daughter of acclaimed fiddle player Kenny Putnam and she’s already managed to emerge from her father’s shadow even though she’s not yet 21 years old.
Latest effort “Warrior” is a first-rate gathering of six indie pop tunes that build on the strengths of debut full-length “Better Than Me” — recorded when she was just 15 years old — and follow-up short player “Mind Games.”
“Growing up in the Black Hills gave me the desire to want to explore and invent,” says Layne, who relocated from South Dakota to Los Angeles immediately after graduating from high school. “It’s always amazed me that a song written by someone after intense heartbreak or loss can change the life of someone else. It is somewhere I can always go to not feel alone, and I want others to meet me there.”
There isn’t a bad song to be found on the record, with Layne especially impressive on “The Lonely,” personal favorite “Shades,” “Not So Easy” and the set-closing title track. Remaining tunes “I’d Go to Space” and “Seventeen” aren’t quite as effective, but there’s enough here to make me eager to hear more from this up-and-comer. (Jeffrey Sisk)