Album Review: Sarah Blackwood –Wasting Time

Sarah Blackwood’s

Wasting Time

Listen While Smitten

 
Wasting Time is probably the most inappropriate title for Sarah Blackwood’s sophomore album.  When is this girl ever not being productive?  She somehow managed to write and record this album when not on tour with her psychobilly band The Creepshow (which is basically never).  And now that the album’s out, she’s promoting it in Europe before heading back home to write and record The Creepshow’s third album.
 
Like her first album, Way Back Home, this one is also self-produced.  While there are some areas that could be smoothed out by a seasoned professional, there is also a lot of raw creativity that would be lost by going this route.  The songs are fairly simple, driven mostly by her voice and acoustic guitar.  The steel guitar is also quite prominent; Sarah is a lot more country than Creepshow fans might expect.
 
There are many songs on the album about heartache and strife, but this is definitely an album to listen to while smitten.  Songs like ‘Coming Home’, ‘Way Round’ and ‘I’ll Keep on Waiting’ perfectly capture the essence of the first forays into new love.  It’s almost impossible not to feel all warm and giggly with lyrics like, “It must be a long way to there, and I wanna go there with you”. Or “’Well, I can’t promise you forever’ I said. ‘Don’t wanna be your everything’. But now at night when I lay down my head, it’s you my boy, I got you in my dreams.”
 
At first glance, this album seems like an EP or re-release.  This is mostly because many of the track names are similar to those in Way Back Home.  The inclusion of ‘Diamond Eyed Devil’, a song that was on Sarah’s Myspace years ago, adds to the confusion.  Also like her first album, Wasting Time follows the same pattern of simple arrangements, honest, relatable lyrics and themes of love, loss and struggle.  The only song that doesn’t quite fit her style is ‘Sunshine Serenade’, which unsurprisingly, is a cover.
 
Again like Way Back Home, this album is a family affair.  Sarah’s brother Ian and father Mike help with the arrangements and provide backup vocals and instruments. Her sister (and former Creepshow lead lady) Jen Blackwood, provides the graphic layouts.  Creepshow bandmate Sean McNabb also provides his standup bass expertise.
 
This album seems simple at first, but listen to it a few times and you won’t be able to get it out of your head.  Definitely check out ‘Way Round’ and ‘Drags Me Down’.  If you can’t get enough, rest assured that you’ll be able to catch plenty more Sarah Blackwood soon; whether it be on her solo tour or when The Creepshow releases their new album.

 

(Original publication: Bring Back the Boom Box Magazine- May 20 2010)

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About J2

What happens when you're a wordsy music aficionado who works for NXNE, CMW, HPX, Olio Music Festival, The JUNOs and Polaris Music Prize? You spend all of your free time blogging about it... Follow on Twitter if you're so inclined: @HearPlugged

Posted on March 7, 2011, in Album Reviews and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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