Jayme Kelly Curtis,
Sugar & Sand:
A Trilogy in Three Moods

(PurrGirl, 2005)

Jayme Kelly Curtis uses her voice and her music to connect the various themes in Sugar & Sand: A Trilogy in Three Moods. All the songs within each part connect along an arc, but the three parts also connect to each other. Her vocals tend to be broad and rich, though she does shift them to fit the song.

The fujara sets the tone for "Past Lives," and the song's slow tempo lets the words' imagery build to the end. The lyrics of "Running Start" are sung very quickly at the start, which leads to the song feeling shorter than it is. The first part of the CD ends with "Sugar & Sand," a song about the daily news.

The second part starts off with the laidback blues of "Blues with the Boys." The sound continues to roll in "The Earthquake That was You," and the piano and guitars shape the sound of this song. Her vocals carry "When I was Still a Girl," with the sparse music adding to the soft, reminiscing feel of the song. This set of songs ends with a humourous look at chores and love in "Do the Dishes, Too."

Her voice caresses the lyrics of "Into the Night" as Curtis sings of romance. The music builds in "Shore of Wakefulness" to ask where dreamers go. The magical is brought into the day-to-day in the lyrics of "Pretty Eye (That Sees Only You)," and the richness of her voice brings out the strength in the song. "Tall Poppies" expands on themes from there, looking at how we treat each other. Her voice combines with the gentle music to echo the joy in "From a Simple Joy."

Sugar & Sand is full-out, pure passion. Jayme Kelly Curtis's vocals give a ton of heart to the songs and the music adds flesh to that passion, emphasizing the tones of each mood.

by Paul de Bruijn
21 October 2006

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