Barriers and labels have their place and benefits. Yet, in contradiction, there are no walls to soulful music from Scandinavia. I would describe ours as a low fence at best… though we do check passports. This little barrier allows us to meet and greet and an array of artists bearing a rich mix of musical influences who reside on the eclectic outskirts of our soul-based core.
It’s in this colourful realm SAIE SAIE resides.
The Swedish songstress, who lives in the US, draws inspiration from female giants Janis Joplin and Aretha Franklin fusing these vocal powerhouses with rock, pop and blues to create a defiant, earthy and magnetic sound.
Everything on her debut album Sailors Daughter is recorded in analogue on tape and live. No autotune – as she proudly states in the press release. Not everything from the past should be revisited, however music is an art where its history can still appeal today, and forever. They used to make the good stuff like this.
Her raw and open vocal dynamics reveal SAIE SAIE’s personality, strength and vulnerability. For others, it would reveal flaws; here, it shows a truth.
Through seven tracks, the brunette songstress belts out her songs with the fire of a scorned lover.
Without a doubt, Moon Told Me is my favourite and the album’s star. Arranged with a musicality that feels like it was made 40 years ago, everything about this catchy 5+ min single rocks. I predict this as a future crowd-pleaser.
A small detail perhaps, but the mix of the recording throughout is enjoyable too. The levels are tuned to keep the instruments (horns, keys, guitar and drums) smooth and focused without overriding SAIE SAIE’s centre stage vocals. The Fight provides a perfect example as the instrumental breaks are so soulful.
Perhaps without intention, Smile feels the most poppy, yet this easy-going single still manages to come to life with SAIE SAIE’s energetic vocal drive.
The pulse rocks (I’ve never used the word ‘rock’ so many times on this site!) with the electrifying Air Run Dry (remastered) delivered with a rhythmic attitude of rap. Darker tones descend in Gypsy Blood before the short ballad Run rounds out the album on a softer tone.
While the whole album doesn’t reach the giddy heights of the opening Moon Told Me there’s still a lot to explore. Freedom of spirit, and embracing the spiritual – SAIE SAIE’s rocking blues delights. Sailors Daughter isn’t for soul radio stations. This is for nights of wild abandonment – or at least thinking about it.
Sailors Daughter isn't for soul radio stations. This is for late-night drinking and wild abandonment - or at least thinking about it.