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SONG REVIEW: Wendy James, You’re So Great/It’s Alright Ma

TITLE: You’re So Great/It’s Alright Ma
ARTIST: Wendy James
LABEL: Cobraside
RELEASED: October 8th 2012

A punk-rock New Yorker has arrived in the form of Wendy James and her new double single You’re So Great/It’s Alright Ma has the perfect amount of retro rock and roll mixed with classic blues. Wendy’s punk drawl drifts alongside and creates a mist around the hybrid sound.

Having previously headed up alternative band Transvision Vamp, Wendy released her first solo album  I Came Here To Blow Minds in 2010, which was written amongst indie musicians, she’s now back with a new edge and style. Capturing essences of early punk and American rock and roll, Wendy has a unique sound that will no doubt earn her more critical acclaim.

You’re So Great is a cover of Michigan rock and roll band Sonic’s Rendezvous Band’s track and has a great catchy melody. Wendy has that rock tone, which sends it off into a powerpop anthem. Simple lyrics with no real cleverness to them but it’s certainly a great sing-a-long and dance track. Wendy says of the track:

“Sonic’s Rendezvous Band are one of my favourites. I got my chops singing hard and fast pop songs with Transvision Vamp and when I heard You’re So Great, it viscerally hit me that Fred ‘Sonic’ Smith had written the complete essence of what I was good at. I stored the song in the back of my mind and waited for the right moment to record it. When I met guitarist James Williamson, the dots connected and we decided instantly to go and do this together. He’s bandmates with drummer Scott Asheton  and no-one captures the guitar sound of Michigan like James Williamson does -it’s obvious.”

It’s Alright Ma sees Wendy returning to the work of one of her idols Bob Dylan. It’s a sultry take on a classic rock and roll song with plenty of energy and attitude. Whining guitars and Wendy’s seductive tones catapult it into the modern world. Wendy says:

“Bob Dylan’s songs are what I listen to when I need to calm my soul, find my peace, find my strength, affirm my wisdom. He has tracked my soul for all my life so far and always will. There are so many perfect moments from him. It’s mind-blowing the simplicity, the complexity, the effortlessness, the timelessness of his words and his melodies. There’s a big difference between listening to It’s Alright Ma and singing it. It was heaven in the studio, losing myself on the microphone, telling the tale, singing the truth, having my few hours bathing in that High White Noise and James in the control room watching on proudly… It was the kind of day that explains exactly why one does this in life.”
Wendy James is a girl who is living her dream right now with a distinctive voice and raw, old-fashioned fringes. Listen to the tracks here and here and download them on iTunes!
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