• Nicole Roberts

Rise & Shine - SIMO

Artist: Simo

Album: Rise and Shine

Genre: Psych Soul

Review by Nicole Roberts

Jaw dropping - that's how I'd describe Nashville trio SIMO's album Rise and Shine. The entire album is a kaleidoscope of influences, with the band bringing their heady mixture of blues, rock, funk, soul, and psychedelic sounds to the table. Rise and Shine captures your attention from the very first track with an iron grip, and it doesn't let up.

From the opening, warbling strains of 'Return' and 'Meditation', the band have you hook, line and sinker. The two tracks are wandering odes to the psychedleic funk, but with a modern twist. The album then turns around a much darker, more rock based corner with 'Shine'. This is the song that's probably the most radio friendly, with a hook that will get stuck in your head for hours.

'People Say' is undoubtedly one of the highlights of the album for me. The lyrical content is quite intense against the backdrop of their rock/funk hybrid, but the jarring contrast just serves to make it the song that much more of a punch in the guts. 'Don't Waste Time' is more of a smooth, soul-heavy track, followed by the sultry, moody 'I Want Love'.

'The Climb' follows, which is mostly an instrumental track broken up by the occasional spoken word peppered throughout. 'Light The Candle' takes the sound back to a deeper, heavier place, bringing the blues in spades. The mood is lightened with 'Be With You', a heartfelt ballad that will have you swaying. Penultimate track 'The Light' strips it right back. It's bare bones sound, lone guitar and forlorn vocals creates such a chilling effect, I had to listen to it again straight away. The album closes with 'I Pray', an absolute monster of a track, coming in at over 13 minutes. From it's opening, distance spoken word over otherwordly guitars to its in your face, heavy chorus, through to its psychedelic guitar solo, it's quite a ride.

The art of creating an album that brings together so many different influences, sounds and moods to create one solid collection of tracks is one that seems to be lost these days. Luckily for us, SIMO have absolutely mastered this craft. It's the combination of their ability to create such a masterful, eclectic album, with their incredible songwriting and astounding musicianship that makes this album an absolute pleasure to listen to, from beginning to end. Do yourself a favour and get your hands on to a copy of this album when it drops. You really won't regret it.

8.5 out of 10.

Rise & Shine is out September 15 via Mascot Label Group.

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