Distinctive voice carries wit and charm in debut

Tristan WheelerManjimup-Bridgetown Times

The Dentist EP is a release for our times, discussing our social interactions, societal values and the effect of fear in our lives.

The debut release from Manjimup musician Lemon Myrtle (aka Hannah Styles) is a relaxed look at these themes, teaching without lecturing and discussing without confronting.

Her songs are all structured as narratives, telling stories from her own life and imagination in her distinctive and recognisably Australian voice.

The first track on the EP, The Dentist, is an acoustic guitar and keyboard track that tells the story of a minor lottery winner who wins enough money to have his teeth repaired, one of the everyday occurrences that Styles sings about with wit and charm.

Christine is the second track, and is the most heartfelt track on the album, where the artist’s voice is at its most ethereal and optimistic, singing a simple song about the simple way of life of its protagonist.

Fear is a Dog is the first real stylistic change of the album, adding electric guitar and string instruments to create a more complex arrangement.

The song discusses the way that we approach fear as a part of our lives and the value listening to fear can have.

On occasion the heavier instrumentation of this track overshadows the voice of the artist and it could have been slightly more balanced to really allow the voice of the singer to shine.

The final track is called The Zombie Song (For Ky) and is the weakest track on the EP, as the instrumentation and upbeat delivery doesn’t match the narrative of the track — a zombie apocalypse — with the lyrics failing to have sufficient levity to suggest that this is supposed to be a tongue-in cheek-approach to the subject.

Musically, The Zombie Song is of the same high standard as the other tracks on the EP and was only let down by the disconnect between delivery and subject matter.

The Dentist EP is a solid release from a debut artist and is perfect for easy-listening and showcases an artist with a distinctive and enthralling voice.

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