Catherine A.D. // Skeleton Songs EP

First appeared on Never Enough Notes on June 30 2010

Released on June 7 2010 on Outsiderhood

With comparisons to PJ Harvey and Kate Bush as well as scoring collaborations with Bernard Butler and Liam Howe, Catherine AD, Catherine Anne Davies to her mother, has a lot going for her. Surrounded by highbrow hype, she has collaborated with Nitin Sawhney and was subsequently asked to be one of the London Southbank Centre’s Emerging Artists in Residence.

 This dramatic EP is fourth in a line of DIY offerings and is billed as being a raw example of original demos, altered at home for release. The tracks actually sound a lot more polished and produced than that but she has a beautifully pure voice with dreamy ethereal qualities. Catherine is also a prolific multi-instrumentalist with a vast repertoire including including guitars, piano, organ, melodica, accordion, banjo and some clever programming on her trusty MacBook.

‘Skeleton Songs’ begins in a slow, otherworldly way, I imagine ‘Over and Over’ as backing music to an old fashioned jerky and silent video of children running around, playing on rope swings and jumping over rivers. The momentum is built to a gutsy, swinging finale with ‘The Heart Wants to Be A Hammer’ exiting with the sentiment: “a hammer, a bulldozer, maybe a knife” summing up the sweetness of the EP but a sweetness that can’t hide something altogether more sinister below the surface.

8/10

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