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On their fourteenth studio album, Grammy-winning folk-rock duo Indigo Girls deliver a beautifully crafted batch of songs that revel in spirited simplicity. Alternating richly textured storytelling with moody ruminations on modern-world worries, Beauty Queen Sister reveals a fierce longing for a more idyllic existence while still celebrating the extraordinary in everyday living. Thanks to its graceful mix of openhearted songwriting and lush, intricate arrangements—not to mention powerful performances by the band and their brigade of guest musicians—Beauty Queen Sister ultimately allows the listener to slip into the sort of dreamy serenity that Amy Ray and Emily Saliers sing of striving for throughout the record. Decades into their career, the Indigo Girls still amaze conventional pundits with their ability to grow and thrive no matter what the state of the music industry is at any given point. Saliers and Ray began performing together in high school, transferred their honest, urgent performing style onto the stages of countless small clubs, then saw their public profile take off with the 1989 release of their self-titled breakthrough (an album that included the first hit, “Closer To Fine,” and went on to win Best Contemporary Folk Recording at the 1990 Grammys).The duo’s constant touring, as well as staunch dedication to a number of social and environmental causes, has earned them a fervidly devoted following over the years. So many artists who launched their careers in the late 1980s have slipped from our collective memory. In contrast, the Indigo Girls stand tall, having earned the lasting respect and devotion of a multi-generational audience which continues to experience their creative evolution in the studio and on stage.Opening for & backing the Indigo Girls, Atlanta-based Shadowboxers have a passion for captivating lyrics, tight harmonies, and soulful vocals. Founding members Scott Schwartz, Matt Lipkins, and Adam Hoffman (who met as freshman at their alma mater, Emory University) experienced an almost-instantaneous musical compatibility when they first started jamming. Together with drummer Jaron Pearlman and bassist Ben Williams, they've forged a cohesive sound based on a shared reverence for the strong, taut harmonies of Simon & Garfunkel, D'Angelo, and The Beatles.This young band's unified sound has an R&B-soaked, smart perspective replete with an abundance of vocal talent and songwriting skill. In the short time the quintet has been playing together, The Shadowboxers have found a collective voice that is intelligent, soulful, and catchy.
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