Artist: Kate Grom
Label: Kate Grom Music
Release Date: 02/24/2017
When young New York City based artist Kate Grom felt stuck between the pressures of practicality and her own dreams right out of college, she took the time to find herself again in music. Alone in France with just her own tunes, she rekindled her love for it and came back to her small New Jersey town with the one true goal of launching her music career. If it weren’t for Grom’s self-discovery, we probably wouldn’t have been graced with her debut record, Heroine.
The nine-track album is a refined, stripped version of coming-of-age country. Heroine opens with “Whistle Cry,” an eerie buzzing intro before Grom’s sweet voice comes in telling a story, belting powerful lines like “I was weathered and worn, I was shattered and sore.” On “Tricks,” she tackles a catchy outlaw track with bitter lyrics about an old love who still has a hold on her. The song carries a melancholy tone despite its full percussion and instrumental sweeps, lovely and relatable, albeit harrowing. “Under The Gun” showcases Grom’s versatile vocal techniques including a subtle growl and gripping distant crescendos of the hook. One of the loveliest tracks on the record is “Whiskey Eyes,” in which Grom’s voice seems to have matured towards the end of the record, probably a result of that whiskey she’s crooning about in this little ballad as she sings “Oooh, he’s got whiskey in his eyes/Oooh, makes it hard to say goodnight.” The album ends with “Only Way Out,” Grom’s independent anthem that opens with gentle, sparse strings backing her deepened, brooding voice before breaking into a fuller, heavier arrangement and mighty vocals, ending the record by taking back control of her own life and hinting to listeners that more powerful music is in her future.
On Heroine, Kate Grom offers a refined nine tracks of relatable contemplation. Using her voice as a vehicle for emotion and a tool for storytelling, she packs her tracks with subtle Americana motifs to convince us that she is strong, capable, and talented — though we had no doubt about it.
– Savannah Davanzo