KATE AUMONIER Here I Am(WENCD224) (2004)
Iíd like to say Kate Aumonier reminds me of someone - it makes it easier to provide a reference point. But I canít. Youíll see in the interview in the Rock Stars section she cites Sheryl Crow and Lenny Kravitz as influences. And combined with being on Sanctuary Records, the signs suggest this could be a debut well worth exploring.
Unlike so many of her contemporaries, itís a breath of fresh air to discover Kate isnít another off the production line of angst ridden Alanis clones. Nor is it a pop rock album. I must admit if there are any Kravitz influences are well hidden, but what we have here is a proper mature rock album. Ok, maybe a rock-lite in the same way that Sheryl Crow is. But nothing wrong with that and she sounds nothing like Sheryl Crow.
The best I can come up with as a comparator is latter day Judie Tzuke in terms of confident melodic rock. Thereís almost a hint of Judie Tzuke in the structure and delivery of some numbers although Kate is clearly ploughing her own furrow.
And thereís some excellent material on this twelve track disc. Laughing As You Fall has a really catchy chorus - in fact thereís catchy choruses throughout, Fall From Grace is quite simply one of the best tracks Iíve heard this year, as is Simple Heart. All in all, itís an excellent debut. And undoubtedly one of the best this year.
But can there be any excuse these days for releasing an album that runs to only 36 minutes. Come on Kate, we want more!
Review by Pete Whalley