Wednesday, 26 August 2009

Shae Fiol - Catch A Ride - 2009 - Purpose Records

I am absolutely in love with this album! I heard a track a month or so ago on t'internet called "Catch A Ride" which was superb! A very groovesome, spaced out affair with 80s sensibilities with vocals that reminded me of - wait for it - Lily Allen! Please, please, please do NOT let that comparison put you off. This is the only song that she actually sounds like dear young Lily!!! Shae Fiol is very much her own woman and by the painting on the front cover she is an extremely beautiful woman to boot. Her talents on this CD are outstanding, there's no other way to look at it. I was smitten on the album by the aforementioned track. I simply was not ready for the other gems that awaited me on here. I'll highlight the more soulful and jazzy outings first. For those with a broader and more expansive ear there are some truly magnificent cuts on here to sooth your ear. This Lady, it appears, can effortlessly turn her hand to anything and does so with such grace, finesse and does so with nothing but class.

I really fell in love with "Catch A Ride" but it was "Lonely, Lovely" totally blew my socks off. This is summertime soul at it's very, very best. A modern groove with a heady mix of acoustic mid '70s Isley Brothers soul and a dash of mellow Chic thrown in for good measure. This is a KILLER track, make no mistake. Soul heaven? Here it is. For fans of acoustic guitar and flute check out the gorgeous - and I do mean gorgeous - "Hope". This would not be out of place on a recent Terry Callier album. "KIng" adds a little jazzy house flavour with plenty of Norman Whitfield type horns and acoustic guitar a la Bernard Edwards. This is a great cut which should appeal to soul and jazz fans and would also attract fans from a more adult pop audience. Fans of a modern Latin sound should check out "Let Down", this has some great, lively percussion and yet again relies on some very well applied acoustic guitar. "All Of The Above" could easily be a vocal track which could been lifted from a Sergio Mendes album or suchlike. The warm Brazilian flavour is great enough but this sexy Lady really knows how to work her vocals into the mix to full effect. Wow! The rest of the CD is quite modern AOR rock cum jazz cum pop and fansd of Tina Arena or even Vanessa Carlton or a livelier Norah Jones would lap this up. As I love all these Ladies the whole CD is a real eclectic must! From soul to jazz, Latin, house to even AOR there is something on here for every ear possible. And the best thing is there are no fillers and the album flows. The best word i could use is eclectic. AND essential. I give you the gorgeous Shae Fiol!

Barry Towler
The Vibe Scribe