A ring left behind; a glass removed. Concrete stippled brown shapes grow and fade under the edge of passing storms. A canyon carved, sitting deep and wide in blood-red rock. A trail of burning rust spills like tears from a ledge. Roots spread thirsty and long. Trees cool air with damp breath. Frost fractures and glazes the crystal view. Rocks worn wet, smooth, and round line a coast rewritten in aftermath.
The Watermark Project takes its name from the lasting impressions water leaves behind after spilling into "places left unguarded." The album's 11 songs take listeners on a musical and emotional arc that begins "on the edge of the precipice" and ends with the defiant and celebratory invitation for the water to "wash over me."
An acoustic-electric mix of folk, rock, and world music, the CD is filled with drama and nuance. Its sonic palette includes such diverse elements as the delicate melody of Irish whistle, the quiet ebb and flow of warm cello passages, a splash of a red-hot trumpet solo, the soaring cries of a lapsteel slide guitar, all held together by the austere scrape and propulsive strum of Frank Ippolito’s acoustic guitar. Ippolito’s vocal delivery is as varied as it is hard to pin down. His sonorous voice may briefly evoke a young Cat Stevens; elsewhere it conjures shades of a wizened, late-career Leonard Cohen.