By Cami Cox
been surprised more than once, listening to a locally made album featuring
local talent, to find something so good and worth listening to that, after I’ve
finished reviewing it, I end up happily adding it to my own collection to
listen to again and again. Well, color me surprised once more with Mikalene.
local country gal just finished a new album called “Pixie Dust” – and aptly
titled, too, because I’ll be darned if there isn’t something just a bit magical
pretty voice is very reminiscent of country starlets like Alison Krauss, and right
out of the gate, track No. 1 echoes shades of Martina McBride, too. Now, that isn’t to say that Mikalene is
unoriginal – it’s to say that her clear, sweet voice, the professional-grade
band backing her up, and the stellar recording quality on her album are on par
with any Nashville-produced record I’ve ever heard. If I didn’t know she was a
local performer – well, I wouldn’t know she was a local performer.
a very good mix of songs and sounds on this album that, once again, just sounds
very professional. The songs blend cohesively, but each one is also distinctive
as a standalone – a trick difficult to master when putting an album together.
Some of the tunes have that magical earmark of a hit song that could hit the
national airwaves tomorrow. The dark, haunting twang of track No. 4, for
instance, is the kind of cool outlaw country that female vocalists often shy
away from – but Mikalene tackles it with ease, confidence and poise.
effortlessly jumps from the smoky cool of track No. 4 to fun, lighthearted
songs about butterflies and daisies without skipping a beat. One line on track
No. 7 says, “Happiness is an orange balloon tied around my wrist.” Now, if that
isn’t charming, I don’t know what is. And even those more “cotton candy” type
songs come across as being fun, sweet and original – there wasn’t one track on
the album that I didn’t like.
about this CD cries “mainstream” – but in a very good way. With solid,
heartfelt lyrics and an unfailingly strong, consistent voice, singer-songwriter
Mikalene truly belongs on a Nashville stage – and with a little help from her “pixie
dust” she just might make it there. Southern Utah singers have made it big
before (think superstar Tanya Tucker – yes, she once called St. George her
home), and I wouldn’t be surprised to see Mikalene be the next Dixie girl to go
“all the way.” She certainly has the talent and the savvy to go far.
was impressed with this album from start to finish. If someone had popped it
into my CD player and told me it was the album of some bright new country star
who’s been getting a lot of radio play, I wouldn’t have doubted it for a
second. The songs are sweet, original and poised, and Mikalene’s singing is
effortless and comfortable like she’s been doing it for years (which, according
to her bio, she has – it certainly shows in her performance).
is one local album I would definitely recommend for anyone who is a country fan.
If you like Alison Krauss, you’ll enjoy Mikalene. But you don’t have to take my
word for it. This country sweetheart will be promoting her album locally this
month – show up and listen for yourself. You just might find it worth your
while to plunk down some money and pick up “Pixie Dust.” And don’t forget to
have Mikalene sign your CD – that autograph might be worth some big bucks one
will perform live at George’s Corner Restaurant, 2 W. St. George Blvd., on
Wednesday, March 6 at 7 p.m. For more information about her music, visit