Strange looks followed me home on the train as I just couldn't help singing. I am not sure if the looks were for the off key whining noise that constitutes my singing or for the catchy, poetic words of Sunday Lane. Bring Me Sunshine is one of those special albums where upon hitting play, you know you will like the entire thing. This thought was confirmed after three back to back plays.
There is nothing wrong with this classical pianists musical talents. The music is varied, but not so much so that the transition of songs seems out of place and choppy. The melody is smooth, free and heartfelt, a few bars into "Heavy Hand Heavy Heart" and you want to cry. The guitar is crisp and is clearly done be someone with talent. The whole thing feels very well practised and clean, no accidental slip of a finger, no chord struck to hard, perfection. If you like your music performed to unbelievably high standards, this is where you will find it. It is acoustic, but not the rough hill billy sort, with polished piano dominating. The set up is simple and sometimes simplicity yields good results, this is one of those times.
Sunday Lane's voice reminds me a little of a softer Julia Stone (no one shoot me!). It isn't as rough but still holds that raspy-ness that makes it distinctive and makes all that she sings sound very soulful.
My reasoning for liking this album is straight forward- lyrics. There are no light airy fairy songs on this album each one is relevant or makes you think about what is being sung to you in a distinctive, beautiful voice. It is almost as if you are having a good chat with her, just in music form.
"A Little Hope" is a perfect example of relevance. Who hasn't sat around wallowing in self pity and then had that wonderful feeling of knowing exactly what it is that will fix it? The “light bulb” moment has been perfectly encapsulated.
“I got a reason to smile right now
'Cuz I finally figured out what I gotta do”
Feeling the goodness now?
Next, poetic brilliance. It shines in bright "Won't Go Back Down" with lyrics like-
“Happy days are behind me
Stranger ones ahead
And I've never been so scared
Never been so content”
"Heavy Heart Heavy Hands" deals with a very heavy social problem in a sensitive and understanding manner. It distinguishes itself from other songs about the same topic by not pretending to understand or know how it feels to be in that situation. Sunday Lane merely talks about what is happening and is grateful for what she has had in life. This sort of sensitivity out to be praised loudly.
The final song on the album is perhaps my favourite. "Reckless One" is what I got caught on the train singing, and for good reason. A catchy lyric base topped with a piano and guitar mixed harmony that is free and delightful to any music listeners ears. Most importantly it is relevant to me, and anyone else who has ever been in a relationship I would think-
“You can be careful
And I'll be the reckless one
I'll get my heart broke
But someday I will find love”
Although one may have been on the wrong side of those lyrics on occasion...
Deep lyrics, music that hits all of the notes you expect it to, worth giving a chance and listening to.
Public humiliation not essential.
Buy here mp3: Bring Me Sunshine