Telegraph Recording Company
Release Date: November 20, 2015
There aren't too many Cat Power sound alike bands out there, but Violent Mae are a duo from Connecticut that fit that description well. This two-piece group is made up of Becky Kessler (vocals, guitar), and Floyd Kellog (everything else). Kellog even handled the production duties on the band's latest release entitled Kid.
The album opens with "In The Sun", a catchy, upbeat opening track that introduces the listener to incredible vocal talent alongside warm, fuzzy guitar tones, thick bass, and authentic drums. The Cat Power influence can be heard immediately.
The next track, "In My Ring", follows up nicely with a laid back rock groove and some nice use of tremolo on the guitar. These songs are of the perfect length, with simple arrangements that complement Kessler's breathy singing technique. There are warm tones throughout the album and fantastic musicianship, exemplified by talented drumming on "Rob Me Blind" in which Kellogg goes to work with several outrageous fills during a charged up bridge.
"Away" takes a moment to quiet things down with a softer, more thoughtful tune that sets a precedent for the rest of the album. Despite heading into alt-country territory on "Murdered Bird", Kid nosedives into slower, sparser, and less intense songs over the rest of the album.
Violent Mae are at their best when playing rock n roll. They spend a decent amount of time on Kid simply jamming out and enjoying the vibe. Although they have included several boredom inducing songs, this album is great on the whole, and hopefully Violent Mae will turn up the dial when they hit the studio again. It is almost certain that their true potential lies in tracks like "In My Ring", where they have demonstrated an uncanny ability to tap into an understated musical force.
Reviewed by James 1340