Kenny Fame’s EP An Intimate Portrait opens up with a fairly intense spoken word introduction. It sets you up quite securely for the somewhat complex creativity that pours out as the project progresses.
The ideas presented lyrically are not consistently as heavy as the intro implies. Friend Zone, for example, is creatively unusual and musically minimalist – successfully expressive of a certain mood, a certain darkness perhaps. The words, however, present a fairly regular and easy to relate to set of ideas.
The vocal rhythm is consistent throughout, and this helps highlight the artist’s personal sound and artistic approach – this is the thread throughout the collection. The interlude re-introduces the depth of the intro, but then Music in Your Life lightens the mood once again, and this contrast is effective – it makes the whole thing less intense and complex, though not completely at the cost of depth or meaning. You get the best of both worlds, essentially – the normality; relationship issues, creativity, a mellow mood and ambiance, as well as the occasional and crucial glimmer of real life by means of reflective and honest observations in the spoken word sections.
At times the music has a very alternative feel to it, and this adds to the appeal. The rhythm is kept quite mellow throughout. I Want it All as a closing track in particular – this one really sets a certain sort of vibe that is dark and driven and memorable. The artist’s vocal flow and indeed his lyricism are often quite unusual and out there, and this too adds to the character within the sound. It’s an unpredictable collection of tracks, the time spent listening seems to pass by very quickly, but all in all it’s a good representation of the artist and his thought process.
Listen to and download the EP over on Bandcamp.