Kate Fenner’s Dead Reckoning is Coming Soon

By Deuce

2007 it was that Robin Thicke, son of Growing Pains’ Allen Thicke, captivated the collective musical consciousness of both coasts with “Lost Without You”. The artist may have earned awards for that release, or for the album on which the single was on. He certainly got the record sales to certify that it was a serious hit.

“Cautionary Tale”, just one of 11 tunes on Kate Fenner’s Dead Reckoning album, which will touch down on Bandcamp and other outlets exactly one week from today on January 15, could very well be a remix to Thicke’s cut. Would that she could earn the plaudits and commercial success attendant to the latter, and she would be in fine, if not rare, company, indeed.

The similarities between the tunes are too great to not mention. There’s the haunting acoustic guitar with the bass line tightly wrapped around it, as if somehow protecting it. The percussion, some form of shakers, is equally prevalent and gives the tune an ethnic appeal. Sure, the pace of the cut is a step or two behind its famous predecessor, but it works just as well.

Regardless, if there were an undisputed hit on this album, it’s got to be “Son of a Gun”. Cliché’s aside, it transcends its obvious nod to the blues to encompass classic doo wop. It’s deep in the pocket, bass laden and punctuated by guitars, and has the most superlative background singing on the entire project (“ooh aah ooh”) that it’s hard to listen to without duplicating it personally.

Seriously, that line sounds so good it could’ve easily been incorporated as part of the music every two bars. It looks like the background vocals—as is the case with the lead vocals—are attributed to Fenner. However, her work on the former is easily her most cogent effort on the collection, where she’s able to meld melody so that it improves the candor of the music, which is no slouch, either.

It’s not just the rambling, roiling acoustic guitars (that typify songs like “Ghost Moon”) that beggar a closer listen to. There’s also organs, keyboards, and sounds that all but cry all over the album. Not surprisingly, there’s a lengthy list of personnel manning these and other instruments.

But, they do so close to perfection on “Gun”.  

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