Universal - 2004

The title track of Denise Hagan's debut album, written when she was sixteen, is a saccharine ballad, which encompasses the style of this collection perfectly. Sickeningly sweet and excessively sentimental lyrics make 'The Tangerine Moon' dated and almost painful to listen to.

Hagan claims Nancy Griffith, Joan Baez and Joni Mitchell as inspiration for her music, but these women did it better and were far more convincing. Hagan's blend of folk, country and rock is just too sugary. 'The Sparkle in Your Eye' a duet with Finbar Furey is unpardonably corny and is definitely well past its time.

The syrupiness of the lyrics is augmented by Hagan's high-pitched vocal. Her voice, while not bad, gets increasingly irritating as the album progresses. Even Furey's guest vocal is annoying, as you're not sure what to make of his grating amalgamation of Irish and American accents.

'The Tangerine Moon' is a trite offering, which can't be redeemed by its haunting music. Modern audiences expect more than dreamy sentimentality for their money and, unfortunately, that's all this collection has to offer.

Katie Moten

Tracklisting: The Tangerine Moon - Baby Brahms - 100 Crazy People - Route 95 - Cinnamon Bread - The Talking Mirror - The Healin' Time - Rhythm and Rhyme - The Sparkle in Your Eye (featuring Finbar Furey) - The Ballroom of Your Dreams - Pins and Needles - Jonah