There’s something in a great voice that can wake you up to living, that can make distance—the distance between here and then, between memory and lack of faith—seem less terrible. Kate Teague’s got one of those voices. It’s a cathedral of enchantments. A pre-dawn glow.
Recorded at Delta-Sonic Sound in Memphis, what’s clearly captured here is a performer with an intransigent spirit. Teague, originally from Mobile, Alabama and currently living in Oxford, Mississippi, sings and plays rhythm guitar, and she’s backed by Kieran Danielson on guitar, Adam Porter on bass, Gabriel Hasty on keys, and Ian Kirkpatrick on drums. The key players in three other bands—Bonus, Starman Jr., and Graham—they bring a floating feeling to Teague’s songs. Clay Jones’s production allows the songs room to breathe; there’s no artifice, no fake sugar glaze.
Teague’s songs are honest and frank, and they avoid drama. They’re quiet in a restless way, absorbent, they dream of you while you dream of them. They move movingly. They host a widening brightness. There’s no easy this-sounds-like-that to hand over (though I’d say Teague stuns and shimmers most like Dolores O’Riordan and Hope Sandoval). These songs are starlight. They punch a ticket on the best carnival ride. They’re long shadows in the grass. They generate their own power.