Marie Black – Water Me (CD)

“Drop Of Love” is the initial track on “Water Me”, and this track has a humanity to it that a number of major-label releases are seemingly unable to have. The vocals on “Drop Of Love” are approachable to a degree that is simply not heard in most current music, and the resulting Marie Black track is something that draws heavily on the vocal history established by individuals like Janis Joplin, Ani DiFranco, and Tori Amos. However, rather than be in that trio’s collective shadow, Black is able to bring something new to the table.

Contrary to a number of female singer-songwriters, who tend towards having fairly lackadaisical musical arrangements on their CD (making their vocals stronger by comparison), the tracks on “Water Me” have a battle back and forth between the vocals and the instrumentation. This means that the quality of a “Stray Animals” or “Amphibian” is simply delightful, and each guitar line, drum beat, or piano arrangement is just as impressive as Black’s own formidable vocals. The title track has a tempo that distinguishes it from the rest of the disc; the slower, sluggish style of the instrumentation here is deliberate, allowing Black’s vocals to attain a level of emotion that will affect anyone that may be listening. “Flowered Gun” is a straight-forward rock track, drawing heavily on the psychedelic genre while still having something to say to younger listeners.

Black’s vocals pull double-duty here in that they convey lyrics as well as providing some additional harmony to the arrangements on the track. The desire of Black to challenge preconceived notions of proper time signatures (heard as well on “Flowered Gun”) further establishes “Water Me” as a “one of kind” type of album. The heavier, harder approach of “Flowered Gun” mellows out for “Hollywood Stage”, but the one constant between the two tracks (as well as the rest of the tracks on “Water Me”) is a quality that does not waiver. Any track, whether it be “One Night Stand” or “Wrecking Ball”, could conceivably rocket up radio charts. Purchase “Water Me” and hear some entertaining rock that has no easy comparison; Marie Black is impressive when it comes to crafting a unique-yet-approachable disc.

Top Tracks: Amphibian, Stray Animals

Rating: 8.0/10

Marie Black – Water Me / 2008 Self / 12 Tracks / /

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Author: James McQuiston

Ph.D. in Political Science, Kent State University. I have been the editor at NeuFutur / since I was 15. Looking for new staff members all the time; email me if you are interested. Thanks!

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