This is what happened when I dusted off my lovely Fender Strat, reads the beginning liner notes of Sharon Coates’ latest album, None of the Above.
Coates and her Strat were joined in the studio by Dave Drago on guitars, Jacob Walsh on drums, Alex Northrop on organ and Josh Massicot on piano, with Jeff Beam lending a hand on guitar for a couple tracks.
None of The Above is chock full of songs exploring a wide range of sounds and topics about feminism, love, longing, and friendship. From the pop rock sound of the opening track “Radio” to the surf-rock undertones of “Hey Man;” and from the lofty echos of “I Look For You” to the slow smolder of “One of Those Nights,” driving guitar riffs tie everything together. The vocals, lyrics and other instruments are arranged like pieces of glass in a mosaic. Each sound has been thoughtfully placed to create an auditory kaleidoscope of sound with Coates’ beloved strat as the centerpiece. The steady back beat keeps everything grounded, and the moderate use of the Hammond organ adds a colorful touch.
Here’s to hoping the dust never has a chance to settle on this indie rocker’s Fender Strat again.
Key Tracks: Radio, I Look For You, One of Those Nights