Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Quick Hitters:: Erin Costelo - Fire & Fuss

I have no reason to lie to you fine folks, so I will freely admit that when we were sent Erin Costelo's new album, Fire & Fuss a couple weeks ago, I really had no plans to post on it. Why you ask? Well, I'd heard a song or two from this Halifax singer-songwriter's last album, and that brief exposure had been enough to convince me that her brand of jazzy, torch songery wasn't for me.

But, since you are in fact reading a post on her new album, you might wonder what changed my mind. Well, it is quite simple: I have read, and heard, too many good things about Erin Costelo not to give her album a chance. Plus, on multiple occasions, I had mentioned Erin as being one of our city's many top-notch female singer-songwriters, yet we had never really covered any of her material. That's a wrong in need of righting if I've ever seen one, and so here we are. The verdict? Well I also don't mind admitting I was wrong: I'm a Costelo convert.

Specifically, I was converted by one song: Weak Like Us. Not that I didn't find the 70's AM radio storyteller sounds on album opener The Prologue to be lovely, but once the saloon piano-bop of Weak Like Us kicked in, I was hooked. Really, if you don't feel like moving during the piano breakdown in that song, you may have some form of paralysis. But piano skill isn't Costelo's only lure, as she possesses a unique voice with a tone both deep and lush, while also full of world-weary character. She can use it a playful manner, that results in catchy songs like the rollicking The Fall or the ragtimey The Day Before War, but her songwriting can also be biting and incisive, like the bayou-blessed whimsy of Rules To Live By or the plaintive Use Your Imagination.

A number of talented Halifax musicians helped Erin create a very diverse and full-sounding album, so I'd certainly suggest that you give Fire & Fuss a spin and see if you too will end up in the ranks of the converted, but I don't doubt that her voice & piano skills make her live show rather enjoyable. So check the myspace below for shows, I believe she has Toronto and Quebec shows coming this summer, and if you're hitting the Atlantic Jazz fest here next month, you can catch Erin playing with Toronto's Valery Gore.

MP3:: Erin Costelo - Weak Like Us

Posted at 3:01 PM by naedoo :: 0 comments

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