Jane Allison – Just Another Girl

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The album may describe its creator as Just Another Girl but its contents give compelling proof that KarmaDeva’s Jane Allison Stanness is anything but as an artist and songwriter. Under simply Jane Allison, she has cast a blend of intimate acoustic and folk elegance with potent Americana flavouring into a collection of songs which seduce whilst embracing emotive shadows and personal angst. Equally there is an infectiousness to the tracks which adds an inescapable weave of colourful persuasion lyrically and musically, it all suggesting as mentioned that Allison is anything but just another singer songwriter.

The songs for her debut solo album Just Another Girl were written whilst Welsh born Allison was in Berlin, having moved there to finish the second KarmaDeva album. Taking inspirations from childhood heroes such as Neil Young, Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, and Joan Baez, the songs were bred from her soul and inspired by the experiences and struggles of previous years. Recorded at The Tea Rooms studio in the heart of the Ardennes and produced by Alonza Bevan, Just Another Girl also sees additional guest guitarists on some tracks in the skilled shape of Country Dave Caven as well as Mark Legassick of Howlin Lord. The now Bristol based Allison, who also has notable acting roles and appearances under her belt, including the Julia Davis penned shows Hunderby and Nighty Night, as well as Human Remains and the Simon Pegg movie A Fantastic Fear Of Everything, takes little time to embrace ears and stroke emotions upon her first album.

The title track starts things off, warm vocals and acoustic guitar instantly smiling at ears alongside evocative melodies. It is a gentle start bringing the folk and country hues which vein the whole album swiftly into view before a subsequent 10351077_671996669557637_1070732306411286045_nbolder Americana suasion adds further texture and substance to the emotive encounter. It is an alluring introduction to artist and release, a soft and catchy coaxing awakening a quick appetite for the proposition which is soon reinforced by the first single from the album, Hymn To Hope. Similarly the track offers an elegant hug to the senses with its melodies and a great skittish rhythmic enticing which courts the thoroughly appealing and impressive vocals of Allison, her additional harmonies just as mesmeric as the track expands its provocative dance. As its predecessor, the folk seeded song complete with a healthy country twang, does not leap from the record but certainly raises further enthralling temptation for ears and imagination to immerse in.

Seizing a tighter grip on thoughts and passions is the following Fading Moon. From its first seconds there is a rhythmic tenacity to the track which even in its simple pace provides potent bait as vocals and melodies emerge and bloom around it. A folk charm soaks every note and syllable with essences of Fleetwood Mac making hints as the song wraps radiantly around ears and emotions. With a contagious swing to its respectful gait only adding to its captivating presence, the track is one of the biggest pinnacles of the album, though it inadvertently places a shadow over the next up Country Lovin’. To be fair the song also strolls along with a infectiousness which is impossible to dismiss and a fascination which actually slips pass our inherent disinterest in country music, whilst with each listen it just grows on increasingly open ears as Ms Allison lays an unexpected hex on the appetite.

Both Catch Me and All Over Now ignite imagination and ears with ease. The first explores western scenery beneath a sultry melodic sky, seducing from its first acidic twang and the open embrace of its Morricone kissed climate. It is a gloriously cinematic narrative with similarly captivating vocals whilst its successor is a slow croon with provocative key sculpted drama, and another track which simply blooms and increases its riveting seduction over time through its sixties enchantment. Each leaves a greedier taste in emotions and appetite before the brilliant Joan Of Arc offers its own impassioned balladry. Allison is scintillating, her voice as melancholic as it is beautiful, whilst the melodic lure of the track combines with her emotional majesty to send tingles down the spine.

From one impressive peak the album brings another straight away with Real Life. Again a sixties adventure cloaks the song, aligned this time to a seventies rock heart with psychedelic whispers. It is a transfixing encounter which shows the inspiration the like of Joan Baez has made on Allison. With guitars bringing electrified invention to the song, it leaves ears wanting more and duly served right away by the just as thrilling Wait For Me. It is a song bred from the same vat of invention and flavouring yet sculpting its own unique proposition within the album. In many ways the second half of the album is its strongest and most adventurous, pushing the creativity and presence of the artist to even greater heights.

Completed by the piano driven ballad Farewell My Boy, with Allison again vocally radiant, the melodically glowing Just Another Girl is a thrilling treat to lose thoughts and senses in with the richest rewards in return. Jane Allison is a bright spark in folk inspired invention with the potential to make a potent mark with her solo endeavours in the future.

Just Another Girl is available now @ http://janeallison.bandcamp.com/album/just-another-girl

http://www.jane-allison.com/

8.5/10

RingMaster 11/09/2014

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Dot Legacy – Self Titled

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Dot Legacy is a band which teases and taunts the need for the music industry to label and pigeonhole bands. They flaunt their striking ability and inventiveness in fusing a wealth of styles and flavours into their own unique and virtually indescribable adventure. The evidence is all there on their striking self-titled debut album, a release which ebbs and flows a little in success but never relinquishes its compelling potency at creating something extraordinary for the imagination and emotions to play with.

Hailing from Paris, Dot Legacy sculpts a web of sound which expands from a canvas of stoner, noise, and post rock footing; pulling everything and anything into its kaleidoscope of enterprise. Within tracks you can find yourself striding down one avenue of aural scenery and with a swift twist of a chord or rhythmic shuffle, enter another distinctly different yet complimentary terrain of endeavour. Formed in 2009, the band has earned a strong reputation for their eclectic and intriguing propositions, which their full-length has already begun pushing towards a much wider attention.

Opening track Kennedy opens on a charming invitation of guitar swiftly joined by a darker but no less coaxing bass presence. Just as quickly again it all erupts into a surge of noise baited and discord kissed enterprise, that small moment in the album alone bringing strong hints of the unpredictability and intriguing magnetism to come from sound and release. The track is a superb and respectful cacophony of invention and sonic exploration, the guitars of John Defontaine and Arnaud Merckling as enchanting as they are ferocious, with the latter’s keys skills just as mesmeric across the album. Basking in a sultry climate with rhythmic and riff clad turbulence, the track continues to enthral as the lead vocals of bassist Damien Quintard backed feistily by the rest of the band, add further incendiary expression.

The great start is immediately surpassed by Think Of A Name, its opening enticement a blaze of stoner seeded rock ‘n’ roll with raw overtones of psychedelic fuzziness and sonic intensity. The heavy throaty tones of Quintard’s bass seduce Dot Legacy Artworkand intimidate simultaneously as the rest of the band squall impressively around it like a wind flushed fire. Imagine At The Drive It and Fall Of Troy in league with Torche and Melvins to come somewhere near the glory of the persistently evolving track.

Days Of The Week is equally as impressive and exhilarating. An initial tempest of sonic and melodic acidity entwined around a raw energy entices ears before flowing into an outstanding mellow embrace of evocative textures and vocal harmonies over expressive enterprise. A technical flair seizes its chance to shine during the smouldering beauty of the song, whilst vocals across the whole band simply tantalise and seduce to equal effect and success. The Mai Shi comes to mind occasionally during the track but again it is a unique encounter belonging only to the band. Its finale leads seamlessly into The Passage; a track which plays like its title suggests and links its predecessor and the following proposition with a tunnel of noise veined by hints of melodic expression and imposing emotion. It is an ok track but pales sharply between the previous song and the excellent Pyramid, a track which ventures into a hip hop area vocally and nu-metal seeding musically, playing like The Kennedy Soundtrack meets Limp Bizkit but with a wealth of riveting twists and additives to create another individual and scintillating offering.

The lengthy adventures of Gorilla Train Station and Rumbera bring further twists to the landscape of the release, the first a scuzz draped stroll of heavy sludge spawned riffs and similarly imposing rhythms but prone to graceful drifts into stoner bred melodies and sultry vocal persuasion. The second is an avant-garde dance of vocal and melodic flirtation, equipped with a Latin temperament, within a contagious maelstrom of thick rock endeavour courted by provocative keys. As with all tracks and their individual characters, it is hard to portray all that is going on within its walls but arguably this song is the most intrigue lit and bewilderingly addictive of them all.

   The Midnight Weirdos provides almost nine minutes of dark drama, the constantly impressing craft of drummer Romain Mottier alone setting the imagination off on a sinister journey towards the jazz and funk coloured slow prowl of the song. It is an engrossing and voraciously bewitching track with heavy metal and blues just a couple of the other tendrils of sound helping sculpt the absorbing incitement.

The album closes with 3 am, an acoustic croon of voice and guitar which feels like an anti-climax to the tempestuous triumphs at first but emerges as a fine serenade to bring the exhausting emprise of the album to a gentle end. To describe Dot Legacy’s sound is like trying to discover the core colour of a rainbow, a similarity in their perpetual blending of senses bewitching hues possibly the best way to bring some reference to the creativity of the French band. Some of the tracks are a little too long and surprisingly there at times is surface familiarity between a few songs but beneath each is a whirlpool of blistering and thoroughly compelling ideation providing an irresistible web of temptation.

Dot Legacy is available digitally and on CD via Setalight Records and @ http://dotlegacy.bandcamp.com/

www.dotlegacyband.com

9/10

RingMaster 11/09/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard from

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