Tish Hinojosa Sign of Truth (Rounder)
Reviewed by Jim Caligiuri, Fri., June 30, 2000
Sign of Truth (Rounder)It's been four long years since Tish Hinojosa's last collection of new music. With that in mind, Signs of Truth should be labeled a triumphant return. The local singer-songwriter has always been one to combine seemingly disparate influences into an attractive whole, and those character traits are refreshingly displayed throughout her new disc. Indeed, Hinojosa's strength lies in her ability to weave country, folk, and the music of her Mexican heritage into her own particular style. She accomplishes that with such effortlessness on Sign of Truth, it will reacquaint Austinites with her truly unique talents. Few artists could include the title track's country-rock, the quasi-salsa groove of "Fire in Winter," the horn-tinged pop of "Wildflowers," and the pensive balladary of "Roses Around My Feet" on the same disc. Yet Hinojosa has the ability to sing these songs with remarkable ease and make it seem rich and inviting instead of forced and distracting. Lyrically, she's never been more poignant, painting pictures of life and love with dreamlike qualities that strike to the human core, remaining remarkably free of hackneyed images while being enigmatic enough to be open to interpretation. With help of longtime collaborators Marvin Dykhuis and Chip Dolan, as well as guest appearances by the likes of Lone Star all-stars Lloyd Maines, Joel Guzman, Sara Hickman, and David Grissom, Hinojosa has crafted a striking collection of new tunes that stands up to any of her previous efforts -- one that may be her best work yet.