Kate Walsh - Light & Dark

Kate Walsh’s last release, 2007’s “Tim’s House” was an unlikely success story, propelled by an iTunes number one single. That album was a sparse, folky affair, with her soft vocals taking centre stage. Light & Dark picks up exactly where that left off.

The opening “As He Pleases” would have been perfectly at home on that album and sets out the lyrical foundation that much of the remainder is built on – themes of love, loss and regret run through the album. This is an album full of broken hearts, mistresses, good men done wrong. The stark, confessional title track in particular makes for difficult listening. As she sings “I left you for another man, and he doesn’t deserve me...” there’s a genuine pain in her voice as strings ebb and flow in the background.

You’d be forgiven for thinking that the album is all doom and gloom. That there is, in fact, no light and dark to be found on this record. That’s not true. Three tracks in, the pedal steel drenched lead single “June Last Year” kicks in, 100% pure country. The electric guitar that leads into the uptempo 1,000 Bees is so surprisingly jaunty it almost feels like it’s a stowaway from a totally different album.

Trying begins with the line, “I’ve been trying hard to be someone else” and she’s succeeded in part. This is certainly an evolution, Kate’s voice taking a more powerful turn in places, and the faster tracks make for a welcome break from the heartbreak. This is an album that, fittingly, is equal parts summer and autumn and might well make a bittersweet soundtrack to the longer nights ahead.

Overall

8

out of 10

Last updated: 18/04/2018 22:29:59

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