Here's acoustic folk-country in Texas singer-songwriter style showcasing the sweetest clearest voice since Emmylou first fried you ... I'll call it downhome, pure, rural music -- fragile and exquisite... unbearably superb songs... Kimberly's a major songwriting talent, and the eleven on show here place her at the top level of the very fine current crop of Texas composers ...
- Folk Roots, England
Purist Country Songwriting, Brilliant Voice ... Houston songwriter Kimberly M'Carver has a voice that will very gently knock you out. It's sort of a cross between Emmylou Harris and vintage Dolly Parton, with all the nuance of the former and the sweetness of the latter. M'Carver can sing clear and pure as a country spring, or turn up the vibrato at the end of a phrase for an especially heartbroken edge ... (full article)
- New York Music Daily, New York NY
Kimberly M'Carver - like the tender, beautiful voice of the Texas nightingale
- Jimmy LaFave
Kimberly M'Carver's seemingly Guy Clark-influenced Country-Folk songs radiate romantic Southern nighttime air that's good for breathing in with each chord change. Her songs transcend pure prairie soul, with the warmest tones to comfort your ears since your first experience with a Phil Spector-produced hit. M'Carver's ethereal coos and pastoral croons are so hypnotizing that you'll fantasize about her singing with other people. One listen to a love song by M'Carver and you'll find yourself thinking things like, "What would it sound like if she sang close harmony with Emmylou Harris?" or, "Damn, I'd love to hear her sing one with Dolly and Dwight.
Competition among up-and-coming female country artists is only slightly less ferocious than a Category 5 hurricane. If you want to play in country music's big leagues, then you need to do so in the biggest league of them all, Texas. This is M'Carver's fourth collection of original material and her first in 12 years, and it can only enhance her climb to recognition. Her music is born of the best of country songwriting: honest, personal tales never clogged with easy sentiment or self-pity. The album opens with a title track that will convince you of M'Carver's prodigious talent; Celtic-flavored with a haunting accordion and whistle accompaniment, it will linger with you long after the fade-out. "Devil or Fool" was inspired by the visits she paid to her brother in prison. The album's standout, "You Say That You're Leaving," is a genuine tearjerker. We've all been there; we just need someone to tell it and sing it right. The album closes with a good ole country waltz, "Another Goodbye," leaving the listener grateful for their time with M'Carver. One can only hope that the fame and regard due to her is finally ushered in by this stellar set of originals. (full article)
- Elmore Magazine (Robert Myers), New York, NY
(4 Stars) With a timbre tailor-made for hymns on Sunday and a quaver decidedly Parton-esque, Houston-based Kimberly M'Carver's vocals are a match made in Country Heaven for her true-to-the-roots lyrics and melodies. Strong tracks on this, her fourth release, include "Teardrops and Wine," "You Say That You're Leaving" and "It Never Gets Easy." First-rate fretwork is abundant, much of it from Ms. M'Carver's co-producer, multi-instrumentalist Scott Neubert. Accordion provides a Celtic touch on the title track and adds to the charm of an unexpected pop ballad, "Will You Show Me The Stars," co-written by sideman Eric Korb.
- Roots Music Report
(4 Stars) Back in 1989, the intent of Music City was to focus on Austin musicians but that didn't even last the first year because country folk singer-songwriter Kimberly M'Carver came in from Houston, knocked me out with both her live show and Breathe The Moonlight (Philo, 1990) ... M'Carver has cast a similar spell over so many music writers, Texan, national and international, all competing with each other to up the superlatives, that if you were to go by her press kit, you'd assume that she's a star you've somehow overlooked ... the upside of (her) rather sparse discography is that they're all superb, especially Cross The Danger Line (2001) and this one (Hard Waltz (2013)), on both of which she and Scott Neubert took over production, with Neubert also playing sensational mandolin, acoustic, electric and slide guitars, pedal steel and dobro, along with harmony vocals ... Most reviews of M'Carver's albums, including mine, start with The Voice, several writers giving her an edge over Emmylou Harris let alone Nanci Griffith, then move on to her intimate lyrics (a few to the green eyes), this time all original, with a couple of co-writes, a double whammy that, if nothing else, shows how little influence an entire regiment of music writers has on the real world.
- 3rd Coast Music (John Conquest)
Kimberly has been at it a long time and it tells, HARD WALTZ is her best work to date!
- KPFT 90.1 Wide Open Spaces (Roark Smith, DJ), Houston TX
Such a good writer, in the great tradition of artists like Nanci Griffith.
- Routes and Branches, KRFC 88.9FM, (Scott Foley), Colorado
There are enough well-crafted, real country tears on Kimberly M'Carver's new Hard Waltz to fill the late-night dance floor at one of those old honky-tonk halls out on the edge of town. We get "Devil or Fool," where a stranger wanders free, lost, and blind, lamenting, "once I was hungry, once I had fire, now there's a burden void of desire ... tell me if there's a soul left in me." We get "Redemption," where we learn that others walked in the darkness before us, and "as you peer into the blackness, try to see what's deep inside, for others saw before you, your pain no one denies, you think why must I wait for the angels, can't they see I'm far from home." We get a bit of bluegrass, a woman who'd be glad to be the cowboy's rodeo clown, some longing, a goodbye or two, and more. M'Carver wrote all the songs [two co-writes with Eric Korb]. She got considerable help from her co-producer Scott Neubert (mandolin, acoustic & electric guitars, pedal steel, dobro, steel guitar, & harmony vocals), John Thomasson (acoustic & electric bass), Steve Holland (drums), Eamon McLaughlin (fiddle), Jeff Taylor (accordian, whistle), Matt Wingate (mandolin) and Claire Lynch and Korb (harmony vocals).
- Buddy Magazine (Tom Geddie), Dallas TX
Anyone who's ever experienced the country folk of Houston singer-songwriter Kimberly M'Carver knows that she believes in symbolism. For her, train whistles are synonymous with loneliness, and a city like "Santa Fe" drowns with spirituality ... On the cover of her latest album, "Cross The Danger Line," she has stunning long hair the color of a red fox and green eyes. In person her stare is even more penetrating ... one realizes how thin the line is between stardom and the search for it. A listen to "Cross The Danger Line" makes one wonder why some promoter hasn't helped her cross it ... Combining a mix of Nanci Griffith country-folk modernism and Loretta Lynn blue-collar strength, M'Carver has forged a collection of songs and performances that most country artists would love to call their own ... [Brent] Truitt's fluttering mandolin harmony helps M'Carver and guest vocalist Jim Lauderdale make "Death and Texas" the type of tongue-in-cheek country Emmylou Harris might indulge in ... (full article)
- Houston Chronicle (Michael D. Clark), Houston TX