Amelia and the Mayor – Amelia (Independent)
As their name suggests, Amelia and the Mayor are a duo, comprising of Amelia Edmunds and The Mayor (of Essonville), aka songwriter Albert John Saxby. They got together in 2010 when Saxby discovered Edmunds making toast in his kitchen (this is reported on several websites, though frankly, it raises more questions than it answers), and they subsequently found they shared a mutual love of music making. Edmunds is young, with a sweet voice – ideally suited to the folk-pop and acoustic rock material written by Saxby, a veteran of various groups, including the fondly remembered cowpunk outfit Absolute Whores, who released several records (and cassettes) in the late ‘80s.
“Amelia” is their debut album, though they’ve paved the way with a couple of single releases. Both singles (“Misused Words” and “Feel Your Love”) are included on the album, and both provide ideal entry points to the duo’s sound and style. The strings on the former collide beautifully with Edmunds’ voice, and it’s a strikingly good arrangement. On “Feet On the Ground” Saxby takes a share of the lead vocals, and when Edmunds joins in, they soar - and the simple pleasures of “Saints to Pass” are reinforced by genuinely arresting imagery and a delivery that appears to contrast with the inherent drama.