Review by Shannon Shumaker
“Living life out on the edge/No fear of what’s ahead,” Juliet Simms wails on the opening track of her adventurous new EP, From The Grave. The chorus of the first track encompasses the EP's themes of personal growth and strength perfectly, and the following seven songs simply follow suit, a tribute to Simms’ own journey as an artist and a woman.
With the high energy war cry of an opener, it’s apparent that Juliet Simms isn’t holding back on From The Grave, and the following track, “Say Hello” simply drives that point home. “Say Hello” has a bit of swagger, a confident cockiness that suits the sound and themes on the EP perfectly, and the guitar work that carries it forward has just as much grit and soul as Simms’ vocals. But where “Say Hello” is full of power and self-love, “Tidal Wave” is a little more insecure. This poppy track about finding oneself isn’t necessarily a smooth transition from the soulful rock ‘n’ roll vibe of the first two songs, but thankfully, Simms’ versatile vocals adapt to the sound well, and by the time the chorus hits, you forget about the rocky start.
From The Grave almost feels like a snapshot into Juliet Simms’ life. There are ups and downs, like the darker “Trouble Finds You” and “My Last Whiskey Tears,” or the more uplifting “Phoenix.” Lyrically, these songs are raw and vulnerable, but also very relatable. Any teen, twenty or thirty-something is familiar with the doubt, fear and even the excitement that comes with finding oneself and overcoming hardships, and those emotions are captured very well in the ups and downs of this EP. Easily one of the most powerful songs on From The Grave is the emotional closer, “Found Missing.” While it doesn’t carry as much fire or energy as the other songs, the passion and emotion increases tenfold. In this track, the slight quiver and cracks in Simms’ voice are absolutely stunning, making it the perfect conclusion.
From The Grave is an incredibly powerful release. The EP’s only weakness comes in some song transitions, as certain tracks sound very different than others, but that’s easy to overlook as soon as Juliet Simms begins to sing. Overall, the most important part on From The Grave is the emotional and lyrical journey. Throughout these songs, emotion shines through the perfectly imperfect cracks in Simms’ vocals and powerful lyricism, driving one message home: she’s not going anywhere.
Listen to "Say Hello" or "Found Missing"
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