This is an album bursting with music that flows in a falling cascade of sound that rises and falls as Kelley Hunt takes us on a vocal journey of enchanting lyrics, tones, shapes and textures. Beautiful Bones is full of beauty and is a musical fusion feast as the band and Kelley mix-up soul, gospel and R&B so they collide and tumble together creating a beautiful sound that is free but perfectly formed. At the heart of the album is beauty, starting with the voice, guitar licks and then how simple things we see every day should be celebrated for their beauty as we take an up-beat journey through the twelve self-penned tracks by this multi-instrumental talent. This is highlighted and re-affirmed in the melodic title track that makes you consider the good things we take for granted relationships with each other and then like so many of the tracks there is a darker message what we are doing to our precious planet. Kelley is the backbone of the album with vocal strength that allows the vocal chords to swirl and embrace the lyrics so that they are delivered heavy with meaning, her keyboards and guitar are the colourful, underlining that strengthens the lyrics.
Kelley’s voice is never monochrome she changes the timbre, tone and how she shapes the words ensuring the album is full of surprises and keeps you listening throughout not wanting to miss one of the musical crumbs from a table bowed down with Beautiful Bones that is the music from beginning to end. Opening with This Time there is a sweep of the keys and the horns crash the party with searing heat they are just the aperitif, the main course is the voice that bursts across the horns, feet tapping the track has hooked us in to the toe tapping blends of the music.
The ballad of Let It Rain is full of emotion and is poetry that has a melodic form with a weeping sadness; but this is not without hope as she sings everything to you are free… the message is be yourself, be thankful.
The music hardens and the slightly discordant effect of the vocals on Gates Of Eden is full of a charged under current of menace. We are treated to slower swampy guitar and relentless drumming that add to the tension as we see what we could have so easily missed through carelessness not listening not seeing.
The keyboards on I Want You There is the driver of this soulful number that tells you to keep trying and is a love song of trust and need that sways around you and hugs your soul. Ending with The Sweet Goodbye the keys draw you into the lyrics and Kelley once again makes the words stand out with an exquisite vocal construction and timing you feel it is just the two of you for the hardest and sweetest goodbyes we have ever experienced.
The whole album is about hope in a barren world which the cover alludes to with a lonely, barren and desolate tree nestles in a swirl of clouds and a sky full of reflections, these could be our dreams and hopes there is a positive feeling within the artfully crafted lyrics. Beautiful Bones her sixth album and Kelley can soar and explore the shape of music she wants to deliver as the assembly of fine musicians gives her a base that is both solid, accomplished and adds another layer of beauty.