Good vibes aplenty pour through with this brand new album from Florida’s Key West Chris. Organic, classic instrumentation, bursting into the room with an uplifting folk shuffle and a series of sunset-soaked moments in the form of Local Island Bar.
The voice, the imagery, the scene-setting, the harmonies, the mood – expect lashings of togetherness, warmth, and a perfectly well-captured moment of escapism that takes you far from the weight of the world.
“No-one here’s pretentious – who’s got time for that crap?”
Everything you could hope for kicks into gear throughout All The Best From Key West – jazz piano, string solos, engaging rhythms, smooth yet raspy, expressive vocals, poetic simplicity and equal parts optimism and calm. Island Ladies follows the opener and is all of this and more. If you’re missing the beach, the sea, the waves and the freedom – this album is for you.
Yeah, A Harbor takes things down a notch with a mellow, shoulder swaying groove and a nostalgic story that brings a welcomed touch of emotive, Americana-kissed pondering to the project. The space and pace work beautifully to highlight the strength of that leading vocal. I’m reminded briefly of Cranford Hollow – always a winning comparison.
21st Century Kinda Girl then drives with impressive acoustic guitar work and a subsequent Americana groove, which ironically takes you back to the last century with its sixties shuffle and short rhymes. Eclecticism is subtle but effective on this album, keeping you interested, immersed, yet always holding close to those inherent Key West Chris threads to maintain relevance.
Dockside Bar is a beauty, setting the scene flawlessly and creating that country and Western mood as Chris and the band take you through the stages of the story. Gorgeous melodies, equally effective harmonies, and a brilliantly Gypsy-folk-style progression that begs for you to catch a live performance. A mighty harmonica solo completes the process.
Local Island Bar (Theatrical) brings things to a familiar yet more detailed, extensively explored finish. Eight minutes of ambient, cinematic escapism that immediately transport you to the beach-side bar in question.
Say goodbye to those rainy day blues. All The Best From Key West is a total pleasure to have play for you.