ALBUM REVIEW: Smoke Fairies – Carried in Sound

4.0 rating
Smoke Fairies – Carried in Sound

Alt-folk duo Smoke Fairies, aka Katherine Blamire and Jessica Davies, release their sixth studio album, Carried in Sound, an album confronting the loss and grief of the intimate and challenging emotions that have on a person and those around them.

Speaking about the album, Jessica Davies shares, “Although the album has themes of sadness on there, it’s looking at those things from a place of strength.”

While Katherine Blamire adds, “It wasn’t particularly odd for us to make a record in isolation. But we had so much personal stuff going on – losing family members, for example. We wanted to explore themes of grief and loss in a way we hadn’t done previously. We tried to be very raw.”

Smoke Fairies is a project founded on friendship. Katherine Blamire and Jessica Davies have known one another since they were kids, forming a band to escape the humdrum of high school. Over time, it’s become the one true constant in their lives – moments of joy or sadness may pass, but there’s a permanency to Smoke Fairies and what it adds to their soul.

Comprising 11 tracks, Carried in Sound begins with “Vague Ideas,” opening with exquisitely beautiful acapella harmonies flowing into a gentle, running acoustic guitar topped by crystalline vocals imbuing the lyrics with hints of melancholy.

Highlights include a personal favourite, “Vanishing Line,” which rolls out on spectacular, resonant harmonies atop drifting, gliding surfaces of opulent strings. Darker and heavier, with murky guitars emanating edgy, angular textures, the title track vibrates with a sinister-lite feel.

“Sticks and Stones” features vocals of a different flavour, apprehensive, as if seeking reassurance, a search witnessed by the lyrics: “I listen out for lines that comfort me / So that I know I’m not so strange /Hear them sung in song / And they really spur me on / To continue with my day.”

“2002” narrates the meeting of a former couple who can’t seem to get over each other. Yet the lyrics suggest nothing has changed, leading listeners to believe the relationship’s continued failure is predestined. “Come back to see me / I’ve not changed my ways /I’m still terrible.”

The album closes with the quasi-instrumental version of “Seek It With Me,” with Blamire and Davies humming harmoniously. A softly glittering guitar and sumptuous strings provide a reflective, secondary melody juxtaposed against the vocal melody.

As alluring as the music is, the superb, melodic voices of Katherine Blamire and Jessica Davies sanctify Carried in Sound as a brilliant work of art.


Xsnoize Author
Randall Radic 222 Articles
Randy Radic lives in Northern California where he smokes cigars, keeps snakes as pets, and writes about music and pop culture. Fav artists/bands: SpaceAcre, Buddy Miller, Post Malone, Tool, Smashing Pumpkins, Korn, and he’s a sucker for female-fronted dream-pop bands.

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