Kae Shelby – Music and Motorcycles

Album Review | Willow Sound Records | Review by Allan Wilkinson | Stars: 4/5

With an interesting backstory, including her career as an Ottawa law enforcement officer, the Ontario-based singer songwriter Kae Shelby returns to her first love, writing and performing quality songs. After serving a period as one half of the duo DanahKae with musical partner Danah-Lee Krieger, Kae goes solo with the release of her debut album Music and Motorcycles, the title inspired by the optimistic road song “My High, My Way.” The album shimmers with soulful rock ballads, including the highly radio friendly “Waiting for When” and the bluesy “Through the Reckless”, a song influenced by the relationship between Kae and her own father, which is both tender and highly emotive at the same time. There’s a subtle confidence ingrained in the eight predominantly self penned songs, with a couple of covers, Melissa Etheridge’s “Late September Dogs” and Brad Paisley’s “When I Get Where I’m Going”, both of which dovetail neatly between Kae’s originals. With North Easton on guitar, producer Anders Drerup on additional guitar, as well as sharing backing vocal duties with Kelly Prescott, the album maintains an intimate, uncluttered feel. There may be sadness here, but that sadness is offset by a resilient spirit and an inspirational drive.

Choice Track: “Waiting for When” (NSV 485)