CD REVIEW: Fly Paper - Fly Paper
By Cyrus Rhodes - 03/12/2012 - 03:54 PM EDT
Artist: Fly Paper
Album: Fly Paper
Label: Independent Artist
Genre: Alternative Rock
Sounds Like: Lenny Kravitz, Fiona Apple, KT Tunstall, Sublime
Technical Grade: 9/10
Production/Musicianship Grade: 8/10
Commercial Value: 7/10
Overall Talent Level: 10/10
Songwriting Skills: 8/10
Performance Skill: 10/10
Best Songs: Flypaper, Sky Highway, Blackwater
Weakness: Mix (Track 1), Winded Songs
Michigan based trio Fly Paper featuring Micaela Kingslight release their latest self titled CD in 2012. Band members include Micaela Kingslight (lead vocals, lead guitar), Joe Chamberlin (bass, vocals) and Ashley Ickes (drums, vocals). Micaela Kingslight is no stranger to the MUsic Business. She was awarded the Emerging Artist Grant from the Gilmore Foundation in order to record her first solo album Still, which was released in October 2009, following a summer North American tour. She was awarded first place in the 2010 Indiegrrl International Songwriting Contest for her song “Aurora,” and headlined the 2010 Indiegrrl Music Conference in Knoxville.
The CD kicks things off with rocking title track an impressive intro piece that dishes out solid low end groove, with driving rock rhythms against mean sounding guitar, Infectious vocal hooks and harmonies from Kingslight. Track 2 “Is It Just Me” serves-up another strong piece combining hooky R&B guitar with dynamic vocal passion and flowing rock rhythm that methodically flows and ebbs its way through to emotional fruition. Track 3 “Blackwater” dishes out a a slamming jam band ditty with amazing solo guitar licks, mesmerizing guitar rhythms and dynamic vocal delivery that leads you head first into a grand slam chorus. As the CD slowly unfolds I can hear many different musical textures reminiscent of classic Fiona Apple, KT Tunstall, Gavin Degraw, Sublime, and even Liz Phair. The music has everything you would expect from a 3 piece standard – great low end rock grooves, driving distorted guitar rhythms with a few impressive solo’s, catchy melodic vocals and a few well-placed harmonies layered along the way. This band really clicks and delivers many tight grooves – testament to hundreds of hours of rehearsal time no doubt. Now turing our attention over to Kingslight: as for her vocal style and delivery is world class. She brings some serious vocal mojo to the table and reminds me of a female Lenny Kravitz. She takes many vocal risks throughout the CD indicating to me a strong and confident vocal ability. Her falsetto is to die for and her vocal phrasing is extremely melodic, creative and entertaining. As the CD slowly Kingslight reveals more and more of herswlf to you, and its obvious she's a marquee talent. Fly paper is an accomplished 3 piece unit (writing and playing) and they also bring to the table a lot of musical variety via this impressive 10 song catalogue. From hypnotic “Circuitry” to heartfelt “In My Room” to slamming “Any Minute” to melodic “Sky Highway” this CD has something for just about everyone. The CD ends with Track 10 “It’s Gonna Rain” the perfect faille statement for a CD of this caliber.
All songs over 4 minutes tend to drag you to the finish line in typical Jam Band fashion. I would recommend Fly paper trim up the songs about 20% - do this and you got yourself a winner. The solo guitar on track 1 is so pushed down within the mix I can barely hear it. After listening to the entire CD I get the impressive this was a post production mistake and was not by design.
Fly paper’s debut statement clearly proves this 3 piece is a force to be reckoned with in Michigan. The guitar has bite, the bass an drum rhythms have serious low end groove, the songs are all short and sweet musical experiences, and the overall production is solid. But make no bones about it the primary focus here should be up front, on the female standing there - Micaela Kingslight. She’s got the charisma, the pipes, the persona, the writing skills, and she plays a mean rhythm guitar. If he just so happened to write all this music - well she could be bigger than any of realize at the moment. All in all it makes for a deadly combination. Fly Paper will stick in your mind long after the CD has flown out of your media player. Need I say more.
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