Brock, Kelly - 2001 So Close

ARTIST: Brock, Kelly
ALBUM: So Close
LABEL: Synergy Records
YEAR: 2001

LINEUP: Kelly Brock - vocals * Brian Howes - guitars * Dave Devindisch - drums, bass, keyboards * John Webster - drum programming, keyboards, bass * Annette DuCharme - accoustic guitar, vocals * Marlo Holder - bass * Kriss Joss - accoustic guitar

TRACK LISTING: 01 Desperate Measures * 02 You'd Be Mine * 03 One Chance * 04 A Lot Of Little Things * 05 Intoxicated * 06 Something About You * 07 13 Stars * 08 So Close * 09 You've Come A Long Way Baby * 10 Everything Is Good * 11 Highs And Lows


Take a pinch of the Corrs, a little bit of Alisha's Attic and a real penchant for pop sensibilities, then you get a rough idea of what Canadian singer songwriter Kelly Brock is all about.

Initially released in the USA during 1999, it's just been made available throughout Europe during 2001. This then, her second release 'So Close' is therefore what you would expect from the above ingredients, an undeniably pleasant and commercial sounding record with definite modern leanings.

And even if you may feel as though you have heard it all before upon first listen, there's no doubt that some of these songs will gradually force their way into your mind like a particularly insistent salesman who somehow manages to find his way into your living room to sell you unnecessary double glazing.

The Songs

However, if you are the type who would rather find a talk station than listen to what's on pop radio these days, there's no point reading any further. Right, if you are still reading this sentence, there's a good chance you'll like Kelly Brock as these songs have clearly been written with radio in mind.

'Desperate Measures' kicks things off in terrific style and along with the uptempo 'Sunshine' would not sound out of place on your local FM station's playlists. Plenty of loops, acoustic and electric guitars and some sassy and soaring vocals keep the songs from becoming bland, even if there's nothing really new or innovative here.

Still, a great melody is a great melody and the heartfelt 'You'd Be Mine' and bouncy pop-rock of 'A Lot Of little Things' are two more examples of how to write a good pop song. Lyrically, we are in 'Bridget Jones Diary' territory as the latter descends into such 'feel good about yourself' lines such as 'Laugh away, let all the rage out/You got a lot of little things to get high about'.

The exquisite melody of this songs means we can just about forgive Brock (who incidentally co-wrote the majority of the songs here) such schmaltzy lyrical themes.

'One Chance' is led by some neat production, shimmery chords and acoustic guitar while 'Something about You' is another pop nugget that will either grab you or leave you cold. Just as things start to get a little derivative, the vibrant title track, the delicate '13 Stars' and funky 'You've Come A Long Way Baby' shake things up even if the rap/rock of the latter doesn't really work.

In Summary

Overall, even though 'So Close' sounds a bit formulaic at times, it retains enough charm, melody and talent to distinguish Brock from a lot of similar artists on the independent scene. If she can come up with that one song that screams 'Hit' on her next record, Brock may be as near to success as the title suggests.

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