Review Summary: Since when was writers block a problem?
When Something For Kate first formed, they were considered to be a more of a full on rock group, though as the years have progressed things have changed and they have become what some consider as folk pop. Though on their fifth album Something For Kate are able to merge both these genres together and create what they have called Desert Lights
Their previous release The Official Fiction
, - an album that this reviewer adores too much for his own good - left the basic three piece sound that they had stuck to for so many years, by adding orchestral arrangements to many of the songs, though Desert Lights
returns us back to the original Something For Kate sound. When recording this album, it was no secret that Paul Dempsey had suffered a case of writers block, though on the opening track ‘California’ he sings, with much sarcasm "It’s a beautiful life"
and by the end you as the listener are quite confused to whether Dempsey is trying to force himself to believe it since his lyrics are often plagued with many depressing references.
As the album continues through each track, new sounds appear that you can’t quite compare to anything else. And it becomes obvious that this band is taking things to a completely different place. ‘This Is The Life’ with Dempsey’s beautiful voice floating above the driving guitar, and then there is ‘Was Outed To Sea’ with an almost lullaby like piano accompaniment giving Something For Kate a totally different sound. The band also keeps the melodic feeling that they showed with their past two albums, but unlike the others these songs seemed to be soaked in darkness. The passion of the band is also at large here and makes Something For Kate’s previous outings look like a happy Christmas day.
shows even with a case of writers block, Something For Kate are still some of the best writers in the business. Instead of sitting with the common trend they do things diffeerently, with intricate melodies and guitar solos that you can tell Dempsey has spent hours thinking over. Plus Stephanie Ashworth’s smooth bass lines and Clint Hyndman’s erratic drumming and you have a band to be reckoned with.
Backing up the amazing release that The Official Fiction
is, it was always going to be a hard task, and even more difficult when Dempsey, the bands main contributor is suffering writers block, though Something For Kate have added quite a fantastic album to their catalogue with Desert Lights
. This is poetic depression at its best.