Jenny Lascelles, Backbone. Album Review.

Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating * * * *

The sound of the sweet can be the most heavenly, there is a sense of innocent wonder that reflects in the voice of such an artist, the listener entranced by the thoughtful phrase, the word of the charming and considerate; yet along knowing that inside the sweet is lioness, a roar from the jungle which whilst might not heard at close hand, still echoes far and wide and shows the other animals in the domain not to mess with the queen.

It is the Backbone that is shown, whilst the face may smile in adversity, it is the strength of character that sees the lioness defend her charges and her pack, the same Backbone that will see an artist protect their work when all around them lays waste, when through jealousy of what the artist has achieved through faith in their ability and guidance, they decry and despair at every opportunity. For Jenny Lascelles the Backbone is more than a title on an album sleeve, it is a pointed finger at the detractors and a sincere handshake for those who see the pack and marvel at their uniqueness and skilful interaction.

Jenny Lascelles takes on the sound of the sweet and the captivating and entwines it round the listener’s appreciative thoughts, there is no motion of anger to be detected on either side but that is the beautiful rouse, for the songs themselves may lounge in the shade of glory but they have the roots of rage based in the calm exterior. Dig deep, feel the sound in songs such as Original Sin, The Girl Who Couldn’t Sleep and The Boy Who Couldn’t Speak and the exquisite Summer Song; the feeling of contentment and the urge to rage at the same time is hard to pull off properly but sometimes in the depth of a song it comes out and makes the listener swell with pride for having heard the musician apply it with truth and harmony.

To have Backbone is to understand that the haters will always try their damndest to knock you, no matter your genre, no matter your words, the only thing you can do is rise above it and see them for what they are, jealous and unsure, for it is they who have no fighting spirit, no sweet smile in the world.

Ian D. Hall