Music Review: “This Time Around” – Superlative Pop Music From Kim Divine

09/25/2017 08:20 am ET Updated Sep 25, 2017
Photo Credit: Kim Divine

Kim Divine recently dropped a new EP, called This Time Around. Hailing from Los Angeles by way of San Diego, Kim recorded the EP just prior to giving birth to her daughter. She planned to release the album after a few months. But as Robert Burns wrote, “The best laid schemes o' mice an' men / Gang aft a-gley.” Her stepfather passed away, followed by the passing of her mother. Superseded by exigent personal tragedies, the album sat idle.

Time passed and Kim returned to the EP, which somehow felt amorphous. Picking up her guitar, she wrote a song for her mother, “Where I Am You Are.” With the EP’s maturity, the release was set in motion. Fate again intervened. Her father-in-law passed away. Kim’s music took on an additional role. It’s no longer simply music; now it’s therapeutic, too.

This Time Around contains eight tracks. “Maybe Tomorrow” starts off with mellow keyboards and Kim’s exquisite voice, followed by the entrance of a crisp, simple groove. As the folk-pop melody intensifies, shimmering keyboards add depth and light layering. The vocal harmonies infuse the tune with bright sonic nuances. The title track reflects an alternative country melody merged with an easy pop element. The melody flows atop the keyboards with a sprightly dainty elegance. It’s a gorgeous song.

Photo Credit: Mathieu Young

“Broken Bird” rides a smooth pop melody flavored with electronic elements, giving the tune a singular stylish feel. Subdued synths and radiant vocal harmonies provide tantalizing sonic pigments. “By Your Side” emanates traces of new wave, pop and just a suggestion of a lullaby. Kim’s high-pitched voice exhibits traces of breathiness, along with rich full colors. “Stay” begins with emerging synths and keyboards emanating a SoCal soft rock vibe. Resonant background vocals add an electronic component that’s effective, especially with the sparkling synths flowing underneath. This is one of my favorites because of its pure melody and Kim’s deliciously vibrant voice.

“Fancy Things” kicks it up a notch, offering a rock-flavored, country pop essence that’s bright with vocal harmonies and vivacious horns. The melody is simple yet contagious. “Where I Am You Are” resounds with melancholy infused with a small delightful spark of optimism. It’s a poignant, tender song rife with the memory of abiding love.

The last track on the EP is a remix of “Broken Bird” produced by Klvr Grl. The pumped up melody exhibits a cogent electronic beat, resonant, filtered vocals, shifting timbres and colorful synth effects that provide a dynamic interpretation of the original.

Kim Divine undeniably has it going on! This Time Around delivers eight exceptionally beautiful songs, delicate infectious melodies and superb vocal harmonies. And Kim’s vividly splendid voice, with its blend of vulnerability and fervency, imbues the music with gentle caressing energy. I have already downloaded This Time Around. It’s superlative.

Find out more about Kim Divine here.

Download This Time Around here and here.

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