Review- “Focus Pull”- Jody Glenham

reviewed by Michael

I had the chance to meet this Vancouver singer-songwriter last month while she was in town for North by Northeast. I also got to listen to her CD from last year, Focus Pull. The album showcases her amazing talent with a piano- anyone can play a simple piano riff, but she shows such variation that it makes every song stand on its own.

Her songs become even better when they are combined with other instruments such as the guitar and drums. In fact, in the opener “Coffee Soaked,” which starts off with a pleasant piano riff, there is actually a guitar solo which blew my mind the first time I noticed it. It really shattered my expectation of the piano-playing singer-songwriter, making Jody Glenham unique from other piano players such as Royal Wood.

While the piano is generally thought of to be an instrument for only playing slow or melodic songs, Glenham uses the piano to make a good mixture of both the slow songs and the upbeat. In fact, the two standout tracks for me were both upbeat, being the songs “One Shot” and “Buttons.”

As far as album themes go, I detected a lot of suggestions of regrets. “One Shot” is all about the idea that there are no do-overs and that whatever happens, happens. “Slip Away” is especially full of regrets, with the chorus starting with “Every move I didn’t make/Every silence I didn’t break.” It is a subject that seems to sit well with the mournful tune-producing capabilities of the piano.

Finally, Glenham also produces a very pleasant and versatile voice. She shows a great range of hard and soft vocal styles which, again, are well-suited to her piano as instrument of choice.

Jody Glenham is undoubtedly quite gifted with the piano. It’s no wonder her music was described by Exclaim! as “sex, drugs and grand pianos,” which is now Glenham’s catch phrase. And it’s a pretty awesome catch phrase at that.

Top Tracks: “One Shot”; “Buttons”

Rating: Proud Hoot (Really Good)

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