For the last few weeks I’ve been lucky enough to be listening to Kim Edgar’s new album The Ornate Lie.
Every so often, if you’re lucky and attentive, an artist will come along who is just so right that their work will change the world for you. Even if it’s just a little bit, it will be significant.
I’ve enjoyed Kim’s work for the last several years and been fortunate to watch her perform about a dozen times in different formats; as a solo act, as part of The Burns Unit, as an accompanist and significantly as one of the guiding lights of The BIG Project. Her generousity of spirit and optimism inhabits her music and you always come away from a show feeling a lot better about yourself and (crucially) everyone else.
So; I had the album, listened to it lots, enjoyed it; then one evening my partner and I were sitting after dinner…”I know we love Kim and everything, but I can’t really get into the new record…” she said.
“What about The Steamy Note?” I countered. This song has a conceit that makes me think of the metaphysical poets; a meditation on the permanence of love even in its evanescence…
“Oh yes, that’s great…”
“Or A Favour from the Sea?” A big bundle of 70s Beach Boys in this one; lovely strings and brass, a vocal haunting in its intimacy.
“Oh of course, that’s brilliant…”
“All the Little Sunbursts?” Insane happy clappy optimism, a litany of good stuff. Miles away from my normal outlook, so must be great for me to even tolerate it, much less love it…
Anyway, it was finally agreed there were five, maybe six top-drawer tracks on the album and when I say that, I mean the sort of top drawer that many artists are lucky to dip into five or six times in a career.
I could have mentioned “Hands Held,” a simple celebration of the significance of,well, holding hands; or “8, 9, 10,” another in small corpus of Kim’s number-inspired songs. Or Ready, performed solo at the legendary Castlesound piano. But then I didn’t really have to.
I’m looking forward to Kim’s album launch show for The Ornate Lie, where she will be accompanied by many of the musicians who contributed to the record.