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Reviews of Brooke Annibale, Cello Fury, Will Simmons and Gene Ludwig. 

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BROOKE ANNIBALE
Silence Worth Breaking
(Self-released)
When Annibale's music starts popping up on rom-com soundtracks and MTV reality shows, I won't be a bit surprised. The Nashville-polished, lightly melancholy pop of her third release isn't breaking new ground, but it's sincere, warm and the best kind of radio-ready. Fans of Taylor Swift and Colbie Caillat: You may have a new soul sister. Annibale releases Silence Worth Breaking with an 8 p.m. show on Sat., March 26, at Cefalo's Restaurant, in Carnegie. -- Margaret Welsh

 

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Cello Fury
Cello Fury
(Self-released)
Three classically trained cellists (sprung from now-defunct four-piece Cellofourte), playing their own music, aim their bows at young audiences, surging into pop territory. Along with one percussionist, they attack similar tunes, more repetitive than varied. Hints of country music emerge as do suggestions of Villa-Lobos' more serious cello endeavors. Tender chordal harmonies also peek through. Cello Fury sounds best and most original when striving for melody rather than insistent rhythm. -- Gordon Spencer

 

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WILL SIMMONS
Rain, Tonight
(Unread)
Guitarist previously for the Hope-Harveys and currently for the Four Roses, Simmons utilizes the 7-inch format for as many tracks, and plays virtually everything. Nothing lasts more than a couple of minutes, which makes the stylistic variety -- gentle pop, a polka/gypsy instrumental, a Dr. Demento contest entry that works without the novelty -- memorable and engaging. -- Mike Shanley

 

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GENE LUDWIG
Love Notes of Cole Porter
(Big O)
Pittsburgh organist Gene Ludwig died last summer, but thankfully his widow, Pattye, has released these sessions from 2008. Guitarist Mark Strickland, tenor saxophonist Lou Stellute and drummers Billy Kuhn and Tom Wendt join Ludwig, who swings, mellows out and gets greasy with 10 Porter classics. "Night and Day" is a chestnut, but Ludwig revitalizes it and proves why he was ranked among masters of jazz organ beyond city limits. -- Mike Shanley

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