Friday, May 12, 2017
Review : Kittens Slay Dragons - Big big heart
Kittens Slay Dragons - Big big heart (2016) Independent
Produced by Sarah Donner
Tracks : 1.Gatekeeper 2.Castiel 3.Smile pretty 4.Love is surgery 5.Big big heart 6.Under the waves 7.Queer and square 8.Symbols in the sky 9.Eggs 10.Head down, heart up
3 out of 5
Kittens Slay Dragons is a new project from singer/songwriter Sarah Donner, it´s easy to believe that we´re dealing with children´s music here just by looking at the album cover of their debut album "Big big heart" but it´s not.
There´s a great story behind this album but I´ll get back to it after a few comments about the music.
I have reviewed her 2012 album "Fossil of girl" and 2014 album "That is a Pegasus" on Palace of Rock but this one is slightly different.
Soundwise, this album is an electro pop affair influenced by artists like Lights, Chvrches and Imogen Heap without sounding like any of these artists.
The band consists of Sarah Donner who cast aside her trusty ukuleles and guitars and picked up a small stack of synths, her husband Michael McLean picked up a variety of drum machines to add beeps with Mike Batchelor helping out on bass.
I can tell they had a lot of fun recording these songs because the music is very uplifting and positive, you might think that the production feels a bit homemade but I only find it charming. Like back then in the early 80´s when the synth-pop genre just started to break through.
I mean, do you remember the first releases from Depeche Mode, Howard Jones and Human League?
They don´t sound too big these days now do they? But they´re all best in class.
Favorite tracks from Big Big Heart : "Castiel", "Love is surgery", "Eggs".
Back to the story behind this album:
Sarah is a cat lover who enjoys fostering kittens and she also runs a kitten rescue in NYC, last winter she was struggling with depression and anxiety and also seeming lack of momentum in her solo music career.
Then into her life came a very special and fragile foster kitten, Sarah and her husband adopted her to make sure that the time she had left was the best of times, they named her Melon.
Melon shook up Sarah in the best of ways, she taught Sarah that sometimes the best way to fight your own dragons is to help small creatures that come into your life.
With Sarah´s creative batteries recharged, she´d like to share a message of hope that kittens truly slay dragons.
Good for you Sarah!