Emma Shaka makin’ me shake-a da fist… I hate it when they do this to me… ask me to review some record and tell me it’s “pop” or what-not and then it’s hard-rock and all dark and weird, and then it turns into some kind of off the wall jazzy guitar thing with these twisted deep lyrics and some crazy effects dude takes a beautiful acoustic guitar and bends it all around for a second till it’s this soul-backed-southern-pop-country thang that turns out to lead right into some really good straight up modern rock and after I went and read the lyrics and judged the book by it’s cover all ready to hate on something for a minute I come out going “wow, this kicks Ass!”
Wow, try to read that in one breath…
No seriously, though. I did read some of the lyrics before listening, which is always a mistake. They are a bit dark and weird, but the awesome music Emma has written to accompany them makes them work, and work well.
Emma Shaka goes from hard edged and hurt to deep and personal and everything between on “Who I Am,” and displays total mastery of the vocal instrument while she does it. She should be able to after studying and practicing to the point that she’s a recognized vocal coach. Which in itself is a long story that involves world travel, a large number of band and professional music experiences and a life that has completely compelled her to release this debut record. Total independence is what she claims, doing the writing, and directing of music, to hiring the musicians and all the right teams to make it happen – and when what happens is a top notch record that deserves serious play – that’s impressive!
I don’t think I’ve heard anything like Emma Shaka since Alanna Miles. She’s like a cross between Wendy-O and Pat Benatar with this modern edge and that adds the perfect touch to her totally rockin’ band. She and the band aren’t the only ones that rock.
I gotta give a whole pile of cred to Shaka (who also produced this one) the production team and engineers worked some cool studio magic on it. To be honest, it sounds like they actually used some real tape! If they faked it – wow, nuts good job, y’all!
So there you have it rock and roll fans, once again, the old crumudgeon has been sucker punched right in the face with a record that kicks ass from one end to the other! Hats off!