Translated by Corrado Ori Tanzi :
Since when in 1996 Martin “Bap” Kennedy brought to an end his adventure with Energy Orchard, whose first albums we appreciated so much, we can declare without a chance to be denied, that in his songwriting he always went in search of a quality that, step by step, has grown to lead him to his fifth studio album, Sailor’s Revenge (2011), dry run of “little masterpiece”. The whole of it is the result both of a natural talent gift and of important attendances and collaborations (Steve Earle, Mark Knopfler, Van Morrison above all and in that case it was Knopfler to give strength to the arrangements and to enhance them with the touch of his guitar).
Bap’s voice is the first of the two assets that make him a complete artist, a lethal weapon. As a matter of fact his soft and compelling intonation “pierces” the caressing melodies (and in this latest disk we can find many of them), in the long-term it gets underneath the skin and then it’s impossible to get along without the company of the irish artist.
Let’s Start Again, this is the second asset, is an album with eleven little pearls, maybe even better than the ones in Sailor’s Revenge, as far as the writing is concerned. It’s difficult to chose from the bunch, because Mr Kennedy passes throughout the music genres with a great facility, just like a knife through the butter, succeeding in giving the whole album an enviable compactness. Maybe also because the band accompanies with tact, no member tries to stand out, everything runs well-rounded. And yet the equipment’s rich and works in an unison way even in those apparently less radiant tracks just as Revelation Blues, that distantly reminds some stuff from the Orchard’s period or the gloomy, terrific Radio Waves with its slow tempo, the sha la la la chorus and a pedal steel that plays with the acoustic guitar and the organ, King Mexico and Fool’s Paradise with their Caribbean taste (the first one in particular would be the joy of Jimmy Buffett), the blues-country of If Things Don’t Change, the swing in Heart Trouble (the backing vocal arrangement created as a counterpoint is astounding) sound like the “Van Morrison american period” so deeply.
There’s time and space to refer about a very sweet, fantastic Song Of Her Desire that clearly explains the talent of this superb irish artist as far as the writing is concerned. Among various musicians which give their best contribution we refer first of all Brenda Boyd, Bap’s wife, able to create beautiful vocal harmonies and on the bass, John Fitzpatrick on fiddle, Gordy McAllister on electric guitars but the list should go on because everyone plays an important role to achieve a result that makes it up with music.
This is an album that must be listened to various times before matching it on the kennedyan ranking. It’ll spread around your heart and be sure it’ll be a sweet knock out, maybe it won’t be considered as great as its predecessor, that got a remarkable production, but here you can find “the songs” and this will be rally important to give it the right score it deserves.
“In your heart you must know, the time has come and gone, let it go” sings Bap in the last track greeting us. Last but not least it’s time to signal that, just like happened with the previous album, the beautiful Deluxe Edition contains a second CD best that picks up eleven tracks taken from his solo albums and in addition two acoustic and unreleased before versions of Jimmy Sanchez and Please Return to Jesus
Translation by Corrado Ori Tanzi