soundCHECK 204 – June 13th 2013
If the cliché holds true and teenagers really are walking angst-balls, equal parts furious with and scared of the world, then they have good reason to be. Look at the facts. The pandering, pampering attention that is so liberally lavished with childhood is hauled from under their feet and replaced with a society that treats teens with either suspicion, derision or as punchline fodder. Here to prove that not every teenager is the feckless no-hoper you think them to be is North Devon singer-songwriter Kiera Osment.
To label Kiera a rare talent would be a masterpiece of understatement. She is endowed with a honey-soaked voice that startles and sparkles in equal measure. She’s a proficient pianist and guitarist to boot. Go to soundcloud.com/kieraosment and listen to Kiera’s new song, Joker. You’ll soon see what I mean as her infectiously expressive voice soars above a moody, maudlin piano. It’s powerfully emotive and sounds destined to soundtrack some teary finale to a crap US drama where the cast are all fiercely attractive but essentially dead behind the eyes. Bottom line: Kiera is already good enough for the top. Pretty chuffing remarkable, then, that she has only just turned thirteen years of age.
It’s difficult to steal yourself from the jaws of hyperbole when listening to Kiera. Her songwriting ability and the command she exhibits over her voice are both beyond her years. Many of the pinchbeck stars that clog up the charts with their sonic dreck would rightly be envious. And while Kiera’s pensive, poignant songs have the capacity to wrench your heart, your emotions barometer will end up pointing firmly towards HAPPY. For it’s difficult not to be left dizzily inspired by the promise this young girl shows. That’s my opinion anyway. Maybe I’m too easily impressed. I was still chewing Play-Doh aged thirteen.
Before my inability to nuance this piece of writing with any semblance of balance reaches a cheek-reddening zenith, let me tell you that you can catch Kiera Osment at Boston Tea Party in Barnstaple tomorrow evening (Friday 14th June). And if that stirs your ambition for a weekend of live music, then you might like to head for Blackmoor Gate on Saturday (15th June). The Old Station House is hosting a live music all-dayer with artists like The Yum Yums, Red Kite and The Devil Delta Blues Band filling the bill. The acoustic niceties of Sam Dowden are worth catching. And when it comes to feisty covers of classic 70s rock, few do it better than The Roughnecks. Entry works out around £3 each – a percentage of which will be donated to Little Bridge House Children’s Hospice.
Right then. Where did I leave my Play-Doh?
CONTACT: I want all of your music news: good, bad and ugly. Email jharper[at]northdevonjournal.co.uk or tweet @testforpulse.