(Photo Credit - Alysse Gafkjen)
Advance Review - Samantha Fish Kill or Be Kind - (August 30, 2019)
2019 seems to have been multi award winning blues artist Samantha Fish’s year in the UK. With the European leg of her current tour taking in 12 British cities, I have heard lots of great things about her from friends who managed to catch a show, and since I was foolish enough not to take the opportunity to see her, I jumped at the chance to get an early listen to her new album which is set for release on 30th August.
Each of the 11 songs on this album tells its own story, but they flow together nicely to form a coherent whole. Fish herself has said that she believes the album shows her personality and I think that’s very true. There are tracks on here that bear positive comparison to other artists, but at no point did I ever feel like I was listening to anyone else. Her guitar work is brilliant and though her incredible voice is the star, she allows her band to shine throughout the album (It’s peppered with great horns for example). There are two real stand out tracks - opener "Bulletproof" which is a rocker with the kind of sound that’s made to fill an entire arena and "Kill or Be Kind" which is where this album really kicks into gear. It’s delicious and puts me in mind of Amy Winehouse at her peak both in terms of the vocal and the lyrical content.
It’s an album about love, and therefore it shouldn’t be my thing at all, but these songs are cautionary tales about the risks involved with letting yourself get lost in someone else rather than sweet songs of longing and so for me, thematically much more interesting. Also, they just feel good. I couldn’t sit down while I was listening to this, that voice, that guitar, that rhythm section, it all just perfectly meshed together to make me want to move. Music should really make you feel something and that’s exactly what this album does.
The tour continues in the US into October. Here’s hoping Fish returns to the UK in 2020, so I can finally take that good advice and see her live.
Pick of the bunch - "Bulletproof", "Kill or Be Kind", "Watch it Die", and "Love Your Lies".
Rating - 4/5