Miss Emily (Fennell) hails from Kingston, the home base of the Tragically Hip and you might recognize Gord Sinclair and Rob Baker as the guitarist and bassist from that famous band. Although she has just celebrated twenty years in the business, it was a chance to open for the Hip that led to her association with Sinclair & Baker. They co-wrote all of the songs with her and play on the album and the trio certainly have produced a gem. That this ‘awesome’ vocalist has gone unnoticed for so long is one of our great mysteries, although by her own admission this is the first of her five albums to date that she has actively worked to promote. The opener is the a capella “Hold Back the River”, a gospel-styled ode to hard work. “Land of Greed” is an obvious first highlight, a gently rocking diatribe against our consumer society. A good example of her vocal prowess is the soul-styled “Sometimes It’s Better to Lose”. Almost as good is “(Love is a flame but I’m a) Fire, Fire, Fire”. “Instead of You”, “In Between” and “You Win” show a remarkable facility for blues ballads. Sinclair & Baker, along with several other Kingston players and backup singers, provide most sympathetic accompaniment. She played Hugh’s Room in October but without Sinclair & Baker who have apparently moved on to other projects. Stay up to date at www.themissemily.com.

December 2018 - Jim Dan Dee
December 2018 - Deb Rhymer