19 August 2020 (released)
19 August 2020
If you possess a single ounce of heart or soul then this album contains 4 minutes and 23 seconds of the most beautiful song and performance that you will hear this year.
The rest of the album is exceptional too.
Australian born but Brighton (UK) resident Eliza Jaye was lost to this world in February, succumbing to cancer, but left this album as a posthumous release and it really is a stunning gift to leave us with.
She had a voice that could handle rockers, hard Blues or, on ‘Tenderness’, a wistful and wondering thing of magic. The eleven tracks here – all self-written - show off her capabilities and leave you desperate to hear more of her music. Alas no.
The album opens with her in strong mood on ‘Sugar Cane’ with a heavy and rhythmic guitar line backing her melodic vocals and then ups the ante on ‘Run Like The Nile’ with strident, Patti Smith like, vocals and including the great line “She’s beautiful like gasoline” – a track to play loud and often.
‘Tenderness’ follows and I defy anyone to not be moved by the sheer beauty and sensitivity of the song. Elin Lloyd on harp and Toby Dawes on Theremin create an amazing backing but it is Jaye’s voice that grabs you and holds on. The tremulous longer notes are incredibly sad and evocative.
Elsewhere she shows that she can handle a more pop-styled number with ‘Sunrise’ or even a sixties style number with ‘Tigers’ – all finger clicks and the feel of a Sandy Shore or even a Shangri Las single.
And that really gives the sense of what she was about. Every song on this album could be a massive single hit from another era, from the fifties through to the nineties, and there isn’t a duff track anywhere.
She is a desperately sad loss to music but this is a wonderful gift.