I had the pleasure of listening to Vicky Whelan aka Keeper of Bees for the first time at a Nottingham EMOM a couple of years ago. The event took place at Rough Trade in the city centre and it was a busy night. Vicky blew us away with her gentle songs and fabulous keyboard playing. She also helped to show that these nights can be musically and experimentally diverse, and there is always space for beautiful song writing.
Vicky has gone from strength to strength since that appearance and is releasing her EP in early August which includes three tracks Find You, Brighter and Believer. Vicky was kind enough to let me listen to the EP prior to its launch and I suggested a review on the EMOM website, so here it is!
The first track ‘Find You’ is an emotional build of piano and vocals that gathers pace to pull on your heart strings with romanticism and poetic lyrics. It’s a great introduction to Vicky’s style and approach to music. The second track ‘Brighter’ flows in a similar vein but this time with a percussive swell and strike. The lyrics encompass what I feel is an optimistic reference to change and a brighter future. Vicky has previously told me that this song was written about a Huddersfield EMOM where she was inspired by the wide range of sounds and experimentation during the night. ‘Believer’, also the title of the EP, makes a good departure from the first two tracks with a soulful rendition full of unexpected twists that keep the listener on their toes. Interestingly the track doesn’t take a traditional direction in its musicality and I appreciated it all the more for that reason. It provides just the right conclusion to this brief introduction to Vicky’s wonderful song writing.
All of the tracks are equally powerful, but Brighter is naturally my favourite and feels personal because of its origin in the EMOM movement. I’d certainly liked to have heard more of Keeper of Bees songs on this EP but I guess we’ll have to wait for the next EP for that or go and catch her at the next gig.
Keeper of Bees is launching her EP on 3rd August at the Starling Bar in Harrogate. Alternatively, keep an eye out for release details on her website www.keeperofbees.com