A talented and wonderfully vibrant artist, Kennedy Frohawk has always looked to music as a way of expressing her most intense and powerful emotions. When the time came for Kennedy to release her debut album, it was always going to be a very personal and moving affair, and now, with ‘Promises’ now carving its own visceral path through music, her very heart and soul are on display.
An eleven-track release, ‘Promises’ beautifully echoes Kennedy’s thoughts and feelings, creating a dynamic space were every listener is encouraged to connect and feel. Opening number ‘No More’ cuts through the silence with an electronically-influenced vocal track, creating a transient but moving intro that lingers on the palette. It’s a warm welcome that quickly transitions into ‘Like Roses’, a heavier, percussion-driven piece that blends brooding guitar with dark atmospherics and Kennedy’s vocals. There is a strange balance to the track, and while the more impressive elements of the track are easily apparent, you can’t help but feel a little betrayed by the production and more muted tones.
Following numbers ‘Next To The Sea’, ‘Promises’, and ‘Crash’ do well to right the wrongs of their predecessor, bringing a more carefully cultivated sound to the fore. They’re similarly dark, but so much more engaging, offering tender acoustic moments and soaring, sonically gifted threads with equal zeal and passion. With her vocals firmly in the spotlight where they belong, it's easy to lose yourself to Kennedy’s charms, and as ‘(It Only Makes) Mama Cry’ and ‘Maria’ come to a close, you can’t help but be totally enchanted.
Ninth cut ‘Saving Grave’ raises the tempo and offers a more fierce and hopeful sound before the flow and power are dropped into another rustic, acoustic ballad in ‘Hell Hath No Fury’. From the tone and sense of closure, you would expect the album to fall to a deafening silence, but Kennedy still has one more song in-store, bringing the energy and atmospherics back with the rousing ‘I Am In Bloom’. A fitting, but surprising close, ‘I Am In Bloom’ highlights another subtle imbalance in the flow of the album, with its style and tempo never quite settling and always pushing for a new direction.
When diving into the debut album from Kennedy Frohawk, there is a constant and inescapable sense of excitement that sits in the back of your mind. Built to confront and challenge expectations, it’s an album that dares us not just to feel, but to feel freely, and be unashamed by where our emotions lead us. When producing the album, Kennedy set out to create a healthy means of emotional expression, and she has definitely achieved that, creating a release that is true to the dark, shifting, and often erratic of the human experience.
You can stream ‘Promises’ on all major platforms by clicking here and grab your own copy on CD from Kennedy’s official store.