All Dressed Up
Imported from the UK Riding on the wave of much critical acclaim due to a healthy back catalogue of material and recent bout of successful solo performances, Rita Lynch is again at the forefront of Bristol's music scene with All Dressed Up. With open wounds and a sound that recalls PJ Harvey's earlier works where vocals fall between intense rage and soothing beauty (Far Away) yet still bordering on a raw, jagged edge (I'll Never Let You Go) complemented by the frenetic and, when called upon, restrained musicianship of her band, Rita's latest, and best album-to-date definitely lives up to her live billing. All Dressed Up builds with a brooding intensity before launching into a full-on shuffling drum beat and forceful guitars that propel this opener to a climatic finish with brakes just about bringing things to a halt and Rita in vociferous mood: 'All dressed up I got no where to go, all dressed up I got no where to go.' Without a moment's hesitation the blistering tempo continues through O God Above, the speeding frenzy of Cry at Night, and the honest revelations of Jesus Converts bringing to mind the live wire energy of recent press darlings At The Drive-In. Elsewhere, the lyrical content is particularly scathing as former lovers are reminded of the scars they have left: 'I just serve, serve, serve, serve. Go lose your dignity to some little girl...Keep a hold of all your grudges let them see you through your life cos my man makes love a disease.' However, it is the arresting nature of the vocal that captures the imagination as Rita Lynch soars between moments of loss and despair (Over You) yet still managing to assert a sense of authority as her vocal intoxicates every inch of this album. The haunting finale of Beautiful Eyes is a prime example with it's subtle undercurrent of bitter resentment being a parting shot. With Japan and America taking an (un)healthy interest in the recent career trajectory of Rita Lynch, it is only a matter of time before this Bristol stalwart gains the sort of recognition All Dressed Up deserves.