Emily Bell & The Talkbacks recently released their EP Kali, three years after their 2014 ‘In Technicolor’ debut. Once, Austin’s secret, Bell’s music is making its way across the country and into the hearts of everybody who hears this five-track album.
“Can’t Talk Back” opens the EP, with an edgy mixture of rhythmic speaking and tones that ring in your ears afterward. This one’s a power ballad with attitude – it’s definitely no Bryan Adams. The Talkbacks hold all the energy of that garage-rock band that’s always ‘waking up the neighbors’, but with all the skill of well-honed professionals. There’s no doubt who’s in charge here and it’s definitely Bell, in this easy to listen to tune, vamped up with synthesizers.
Bell has a message she wants the world to know; empowerment is not something to be afraid of. She is, and she wants every female to be, with all proceeds of her April 29th Official Release Party being donated to The Girls Empowerment Network. Bell believes in you, even if you don’t believe in yourself and her voice will pick you back up from the cold floor after a hard week.
This message is reverberated throughout the EP, with the first song released “Goddess of Destruction” taking a much softer approach. Her accent is prominent as she calls out for ‘Kali’, sweet and honest. But the song turns choppy and turbulent; like gritty coffee beans not quite stirred into your morning coffee, bitter and interesting enough to glue you to it, as the sweetness warms your stomach. “We’ll all be bigger than the dream,” she promises. She’s leading a crowd and we can’t help but follow. This is a protest and I hear what she’s saying; nothing can stop you now.
Known for blazing stages and rock ‘n’ roll style, she’s the epitome of women in contemporary rock. A modern day female Nikki Sixx, but with much more tension and vulnerability. She refuses to lose her femininity and as you make your way through the EP, she shows this with pride, stronger with the stain of her pain.
The final song on this album will leave you craving more. “Crashing Hearts” is vulnerable and soulful, a side to Emily that shows you that it’s okay to be sad sometimes, it makes you feel like you know her. She sings softly “one day together, and the next day alone”, captioning a feeling of heartbreak in this song. She speaks metaphorically, depicting it as a car crash; brutal, violent and fatal, yet oddly so beautiful. She shows that you can be strong and still have fears too.
She captions every doubt and every painful step, exposing her weaknesses, but she doesn’t care and nor will you. Vulnerable or not, she’s empowered and she is in charge.
Emily Bell and The Talkbacks Official Kali Release Party will be held on Saturday, April 29 at 3TEN Austin City Limits Live. All proceeds will be donated to The Girls Empowerment Network. Tickets available here: http://www.ticketfly.com/purchase/event/1442483
Can’t Talk Back
Girls That Never Die
Goddess of Destruction
Author: Megan Matthews