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Tami Neilson - Chickaboom!

  by Lisa Torem

published: 17 / 3 / 2020

Tami Neilson - Chickaboom!
Label: Outside Music
Format: CD


Strident and dramatic new album from award-winning Canadian but now New Zealand-based singer-songwriter Tami Neilson

Award-winning vocalist/songwriter and native Canadian Tami Neilson, who relocated to New Zealand, makes it absolutely clear that she can unleash a hailstorm of emotion on ten-track release ‘Chickaboom’. It will come as no surprise that she comes from a musical family (musician parents and brothers) and that she’s paid her dues with 10,000 hours on the road, in the studio and at every conceivable open mic over the course of her career. The first offering, ‘Call Your Mama’, shows off her brassy attitude and husky pipes. On ‘Hey, Bus Driver!’ she makes it just as real: “Living out of a suitcase down to my last blue jeans…” This number speaks volumes about the the narrator’s valiant effort to get home in one piece and when she croons, “Got no honey in the morning/Got no sugar in my bowl” you know you have to swing that door wide open upon her return. Neilson’s take-no-prisoners vocals whip against equally strident electric guitar for great effect. The slap-style percussion beneath the next story supremely sets the stage: “Let’s work a little harder punching that clock,” she demands. The gritty, lived in tale and the truck-like electronic effects frame her gutsy delivery with no-holds barred. ‘Queenie, Queenie’ is as riveting as a child’s jump rope chant. It’s fun to see Neilson’s playful side. On ‘You Were Mine,’ she turns this steamy torch into an epic classic. “Take my faith, so strong and full of fire.” With lyrics like this, you will remain convinced that this lady doesn’t mess around. Her voice growls and drips with passion. And yet, still, we’re caught unaware for the next dose of intensity: “Lower me down to the ground in 16 miles of chains,” she blasts. Here, vocals are reinforced by the tight rhythm section and pulsating phrases: “I paid in blood for that cold, black heart” she admits. ’16 Miles of Chain’ is a searing story regaled with absolutely no apologies. ‘Tell Me That You Love Me’ is also riveting, but more fast-paced; a drastic departure from her other work. The male/female duet cuts right to the centre of the evocative core. If you’re not a true romantic, skip ‘Any Fool with A Heart’. This is a full-on blast from an era sadly past and further proof of Neilson’s feisty coloration. The great instrumental transitions and soulful commitment make this tune swing like a hammock in a windstorm. ‘Sleep,’ the tenth and final song, is subtle as a wistful lullaby and further proof that Tami Neilson’s powerful stories and magical voice are destined to shake the trees.

Track Listing:-
1 Call Your Mama
2 Hey, Bus Driver!
3 Ten Tonne Truck
4 Queenie, Queenie
5 You Were Mine
6 16 Miles of Chain
7 Tell Me That You Love Me
8 Any Fool With a Heart
9 Sister Mavis
10 Sleep

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Don't Be Afraid (2016)
Fifth album from New Zealand’s Tami Neilson, which, informed by the loss of her father Ron Neilson, the leader of Canada’s Neilson Family Band, is a glorious mix of country, soul and gospel that will touch many
Dynamite (2015)

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