By Dustin Sclafani
The illusion that all good art has an age limit is a staple in our society. It seems an artist’s age can become branded to them like their own personal Scarlet Letter. The lie that we no longer have an artistic point of view can snuff out the fire in so many artists but truly a death nail if you are a woman in the music industry, but like any glass ceiling all it takes is one brick and the person with one hell of an arm to smash that son of a. That brick here is “Rapture” and the artist taking aim at said glass ceiling: Emily Breeze.
Emily Breeze is from Bristol UK, her writing is a brutally honest take on life and Rapture is really a coming of age story, well more a coming of middle age story to be honest. Breeze was given every trick and tip from the music industry types to try and hide her age, “as if it was a dirty secret like an STD or a disgraced royal, so I decided to do the exact opposite” Breeze said. This is the lyrical landscape that Rapture dances in. From Ordinary Life thru Confessions Of An Ageing Party Girl, Breeze tells real stories about the real life and struggles of an “ageing” artist. If we are being honest it is a story we too often ignore in our musical landscape, almost to say your point of view is pointless if the bouncer isn’t triple checking your id at the door.
Teaming with producer Stew Jackson (Massive Attack) Breeze with an all star band, Rob Norbury (lead guitar), Andy Sutor (drums), George Caveney (bass) and Helen Stanley (keys/synths), really paints a sonic landscape that both gives the nostalgic hairs on the back of one’s neck the NYC club vibe that echoed from the Limelight thru CBGBs and the overhead playlist of your local grocery store that gets you bopping to self checkout. The true power of these tracks is honesty and the beauty of flamboyant failure. “The party’s over baby, but I’m never going home. Wrap my arms around a stranger nothing glitters when you’re gone” from the single “Confessions Of An Ageing Party Girl” is both glorious battle cry and heartbreaking reality. Does “the party” truly pass us by or can we truly redefine what that party is?
If I am being honest this album might be the perfect portrait of Gen X today, a patchwork of incredible influences from Patti Smith to LCD Soundsystem are woven through very real stories that are sometimes fun, sometimes painful, sometimes pretty and sometimes the reality that is the make up smeared walk of shame. Once again proving that Gen X is not like the generations before and they will not just roll over and let their art die, but they will be honest about it and they will admit that honesty is never always pretty but it is always real. This is the beautiful landscape that is Emily Breeze’s Rapture, on Sugar Shack Records, paints in and what a painting it is. Rapture is available now on all streaming platforms.