All Ice No Whiskey (00:03:09)
Twisted Ambition (00:03:14)
Forever Together (00:02:54)
Crowd Control (00:04:17)
Imaginary War (00:03:09)
Better Be Lonely (00:03:40)
So-Called Lover (00:03:05)
Like A Classic (00:03:47)
All The Words (00:04:35)
Genre-busting guitarist, vocalist, and songwriter Samantha Fish turns all of her powers loose on her brand new album Faster. Set to be released on September 10th, 2021 by Rounder Records, Faster shows Fish digging deeper into her rock and roll bag than ever before while still showing love for the blues and roots music at her core. This time out, she made her record with producer Martin Kierszenbaum (Lady Gaga, Sting), who co-wrote eight of the 12 new tunes on it. Kierszenbaum helped Fish refocus her sound and expand her style into previously uncharted territory. He also played guitar, piano, keyboards, and percussion on the sessions, which also featured drummer Josh Freese (Guns N’ Roses, Nine Inch Nails, The Replacements) and bassist Diego Navaira (The Last Bandoleros). There’s even an unexpected guest appearance by rapper/singer/songwriter Tech N9ne. The end result of all of this is a rocking set of new music that shows Fish to be an artist without limits.
The award-winning Fish is pleased with how everything turned out and her enthusiasm permeates the set. “The whole record has a theme of taking charge and taking the reins, in a relationship or in life in general,” she said. “I really thought that after 2020 I’d end up with a really dismal, bleak album, but instead, we came up with something that’s fun and sexy and so empowering.” Her vocal chops and musicianship have never been hotter and hearing her take them into new places where others fear to tread is a compelling experience. Fish refuses to recycle, choosing instead to reinvent her sound and vision in a successful effort to chase her muse no matter where it takes her.
Samantha opens the record with her ferocious title track “Faster.” It’s a tough, audacious song with a full-bore rock and roll attitude. Her lyrics and vocal takes are confident and full of the kind of swag it takes to be a star. Fish drops a quick interlude of reversed guitar notes that add some cool texture before launching into an impressive solo. This, friends and neighbors, is how you open an album. You simply blow their minds.
“All Ice No Whiskey” blends Fish’s rock guitar stylings with a 21st Century pop sound and production approach. It’s a bold hybrid song that actually works amazingly well and illustrates the potential of this type of innovative crossover. Fish fits these two seemingly opposite genres in a way that makes perfect sense when you hear it and delivers something new to the world. Just when you think you’ve got her figured out, Fish takes a hard left turn into the floating dream pop of “Crowd Control.” It’s a reflective song with an indie pop feel built on delicate grooves and shining keyboards. Still, she makes her guitar playing work in this new context like it was meant to be and comes off as fresh and original.
“Loud” is an ambitious cut that shifts from tender pop to heavy rock and back again. Tech N9ne shows up big time on this one and his hip-hop influence helps Fish drop another new sound that she, of course, pulls off like a boss. “Hypnotic” is a great bit of modern R&B that’s deep, entrancing, and shows off Samantha’s mellow vocals before exploding into a guitar solo. Be sure to also check out “So-Called Lover” and “All The Words.”
It’s clear that there are oceans of music within Samantha Fish that she’s just beginning to sail and that Faster is an immense creative breakthrough for her. This record puts her light years ahead of any competition she used to have and has the beats and hooks needed to make Fish a household name. Come to it with an open mind and get down with the future.
By Mike O’Cull