An eerily ambient hand clapping accompaniment paves the way for the Regina Spektor being interrupted by Sheryl Crow vocals, as the expressive Scarlette Fever ponders the meaning of significant others, ‘Hour Of Sunshine (Remix by Cenzo Townsend)’. The versatility of the vocals is celebrated proudly here. They can take on a low-key pleading touch when needed and, then build up to a full frontal pop push when the twinning guitar led and rustling percussion instrumentals increase in volume and heart.
‘Cheatin’ Man (Live Mix By Ashley Howes)’, shows an ability to lean in a more blues country direction, possessing the vocal clarity of a Thea Gilmore. Scarlette Fever bears out her bleeding heart well enough, without appearing too self-pitying. Striding guitar backing and a shattering percussion touch that’s trodden over by a rumbling bass edge sets the scene perfectly, for some reassuringly assertive gospel backing. ‘Good Day (Live Mix by Ash Howes)’ , oozes with peaceful serenity as Fever hovers her vocals to deliver a romance backing ode that coasts along, on top of a trickling key-led instrumental.
In revisiting songs that have raised her profile and stripping them down to bear out the lyrical punch that may have previously, not been fully appreciated. This ranging songstress, ironically, illuminates the point that there is a lot left in this locker and fans will have to keep guessing about her future direction. It could go anyway!
A twining together of the feministic and feisty worldliness of Thea Gilmore with the rustic, stern tug of Tori Amos and the soothingly mystical charm of Beth Orton, is the overall impression given off by the Hertfordshire born songstress, Scarlette Fever. Who turned down a career in marine biology to allow us to sink into her musing, uplifting and, at times, illuminating mindset. ‘Crash and Burn’, opens out the album in a haunting indie stroll kind of a way, creating the perfect platform for rising delivery of the pleading, life grabbing lyrics:
“I should take my own advice, but I’m only human.
Why don’t we roll the dice? When I lose I’d risk it all…
So what if we crash and burn!”
There’s plenty of atmospheric searching peppered around a full bodied pop chorus and general indie guitar lag, ‘Black & White’. With Fever’s clear hovering gait it was never going to be long before a swooning ode is filtered into proceedings, ’Good Day’. Soft and cushioning vocals give the song sincerity and this sincerity shakes away any forcedness that often attaches to numbers of this ilk. It’s a vibe that trickles into the humbling, wandering ballad, ‘Praying For Change’. It makes for an extended, poignantly tender interlude.
‘Elated’, brings out a little of the Katie Melua in our heroine, as she coasts over the stepping key-led instrumental and mixing in a broody, but warm vocal touch. When this sauntering songstress lifts her vocals and hits the higher keys, the emotion starts to tug at you and paves the way for the weeping strings. Symphonic touches draw you into the darkly veiled strut of ‘Single White Female’. It is contrasted by the lobbing, worrisome low key pop trip, ‘You Don’t Know My Name’. There is range, heart and lyrical depth aplenty as this debut album takes on a ranging and wandering vibe.
‘Lovestruck’, is a playful pop pearl that offers some needy respite from the realism and stern slower numbers that are scattered around. Fever will continue to grow and her enthusiastic approach is infectious.