Malaya Blue has been making quite a name for herself on the UK blues circuit this last year since the release of her highly acclaimed debut album Bourbon Street. Heartsick is the latest offering from this talented woman with the smokey voice.
Very much a progression from Bourbon Street, this beautifully produced album showcases Malaya Blue’s ability to perform across a variety of styles. “Acceptance”, an out and out love song, hints to me of a James Bond theme, whilst “I Have Arrived” is good old fashioned gospel and perhaps a bit autobiographical?
My favourite track is “Lets Reinvent Love” of which one reviewer has said: “The voice is velvet rich and luxuriant like fine malt being poured over ice…” Now, as a man who likes a good malt but would never put ice anywhere near it, I must admit to having sat back, glass of malt in hand, and lost myself in this moody, seven-minute-long track.
“Hope” throws a surprise through the headphones with that beautiful guitar solo by Dudley Ross. Indeed, in producing this album, Malaya has surrounded herself with an excellent set of musicians including Paul Jobson on keyboard, Andrew McGuinness on percussion and Stuart Uren on bass as well as the aforementioned Ross.
On hearing the title and opening track “Heartsick” I made the mistake of listening to this album in the car. That was a mistake, there are too many distractions on the road. Heartsick deserves your full attention, it is a cracking album leaving you wanting more, and doubtless there is plenty more to come.
One personal omission on my part is not yet having seen Malaya Blue play live – this I will have to rectify over the summer. Click here for Malaya Blue’s live dates.