March 2017


CD Review By: James Carlson

You know those albums that you instantly fall in love with and are so well-crafted, brilliantly executed, and full of substance that they move beyond being a piece of ephemeral entertainment to become a decidedly more precious and lasting experience? Well, for me, Thelma's self-titled debut can now be counted among the handful of albums I feel this way about. And I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of other listeners soon shared that feeling.

Fronted by composer, guitarist and vocalist Natasha Jacobs and backed by the musical talents of Daniel Stiles, Maciej Lewandowski, Juan Pablo Stiles and John Stanesco, Thelma is preparing to offer up its seven-song debut...and it is a remarkably strong debut. Now, while there are elements of indie and alternative with a faint echo of folk in Thelma's sound, attempting to assign them to a genre or subgenre of any kind would be doing the band a disservice. Speaking of Thelma's sound, there are a number of strangely compatible contraries at work in Jacob's songs. Yes, I fully realize that this last statement is a blatant contradiction, yet it is so. In other words, these songs are simultaneously bright and dark, raw and polished, simple and complex, gentle and fierce, and so on. They are also marked by Jacob's hauntingly beautiful falsetto, whispers and wails, well-penned lyrics, semi-clean and reverberating guitar chords, and highly effective additional instrumentation which complement the compositions impressively.

Standouts on Thelma's self-titled release include the opener "If You Let It," "White Couches," "Spool," and the closer and title track "Thelma."

Thelma's self-titled album is scheduled for a March 10, 2017 from Tiny Engines. This limited edition LP is up for pre-order now and is available in vinyl (200 in black and clear split and 300 in translucent candy grape purple) and digital formats.

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