Review: Shred Kelly, “Like A Rising Sun”

Shred Kelly - Like a Rising Sun

Fernie, BC seasoned folk-rockers, Shred Kelly, release “Like A Rising Sun” today, their fifth studio album and follow up to their popular 2018 “Archipelago” album.  Shred Kelly have been steadily writing songs and releasing albums every two-three years since their emergence from the Canadian Rockies back in 2009, and with production duties handled this time around by Nygel Asselin (Half Moon Run), and mixed by Ben Kaplan (Corb Lund), this latest release may very well be their most raw album to date. 

Offering deep emotions that are beautifully articulated by co-vocalists Tim Newton and Sage McBride, their deeply personal tales are further enhanced by the spectacular musicianship from band mates Ty West (guitars), Jordan Vlasschaert (bass), and Ryan Mildenberger (drums).  Shred Kelly have toured with many notable Canadian artists over the years, including The Dead South, Elliott BROOD and The Strumbellas, and have performed at many internationally acclaimed festivals such as SXSW, Mariposa Folk Festival, and Australian Music Week.  

“Like A Rising Sun” offers eleven new compositions, including the previous single releases “Dead Leaves” and “Disconnect,” and their most recent, “Underground.”  The same energy that I enjoyed from “Archipelago” is still present (as is the inclusion of Tim’s clawhammer banjo), allowing me to become quickly lost in their tap-worthy, upbeat sounds, before turning inward and exploring their well-crafted, soulful lyrics.  Inspiration for this album was drawn partly from some life-changing emotional experiences that Tim Newton endured; both the loss of his father, and also from the birth of his daughter. 

Shred Kelly

Both topics are prevalent through the tracks “Take Me Home,” and “Long Way From Your Heart,” with Tim sharing his love and excitement about becoming a father during “Roman Candle Eyes.” “Heart racing / Tears, my eyes are making / Forgetting all the days when / I lived for myself,” he wholeheartedly recites.  “I can see forever / I can feel your cries . And you cut me with your / Roman candle eyes.”  As a parent myself, I’m transported back to that snowy day in January when my daughter was born, and how nervous and excited her dad was to meet her; that first look they gave each other.  It was so special to see that side of him.

I can’t seem to stop listening to “You Almost Meant The World To Me,” a track that showcases Sage McBride’s lovely voice, and a much slower, softer side to their repertoire.  My eyes naturally just want to close as I sway along with her vocals, connecting with and understanding the pain of a relationship where things were seemingly going so well, only to end and leave us replaying the past in an attempt to figure out what went wrong.  “You almost meant the world to me / Then started to reveal the cracks / You almost meant the world to me / But somehow we got off track,” she delivers, her voice from the speakers sounding like she is here in the room with me, like good friends sharing intimate conversations about the hopelessness of lost love, all through song, to this audience of one.  “Cold days are done / Finding out / Time to build my future / I’m too easy on the past / Too stuck in what didn’t last.

“Like A Rising Sun” is an outpouring of explosive, fast-paced, and anthemic folk rock, which I find incredibly impressive and enjoyable from beginning to end.  Shred Kelly have very quickly become a new favorite band for me, and I highly recommend you give their music a spin.  Go ahead and satisfy your summer music cravings with this wonderful new album, released today via Devil Duck Records.

Photo Credit:  Kate Ediger

Jess has always enjoyed a wide range of music genres and eras. Connecting deeply with classical music, she played cello from grade school through high school, and although no longer actively playing, her affinity for finding an emotional connection to music is still strong. Residing in central PA, she is new to the Canadian music scene and enjoys listening to new artists as a way to break away from “the usual.” Jess is an avid yogi who often finds a sliver of peace while on the yoga mat with good music playing in the background.