Where she is leading us is a thickly arranged, impeccably executed, and beautifully produced 4-song journey. Complete with unblemished, clean-cut production and a fantastic backing band of skilled musicians, A Sign of Weakness sets the stage with the glorious conclusion of the title cut, where layers upon layers of infectiously catchy vocal motifs lift our spirits up until they land softly at track 1’s tender conclusion.
Amadee pays a visit to her folky side next on the pleasant, lightly arranged “Shine.” Paying tribute to female folk heroes of the 20th Century such as Joni Mitchell and Alison Krauss, she sings a comforting ode to an unnamed, seemingly troubled soul. After addressing the trials of being “washed away by the waters that made you” and “torn away by the hands that shaped you,” Amadee proclaims “Well hey there little love of mine/I only wanted for you to find/A reason for you to shine,” launching into the mid-tempo strut of the (as always) catchy refrain of the song.
The remainder of the EP does not disappoint, from the clever, (presumably) metaphorical lyrics of “Lemon Juice” to the “59th Street Bridge Song”-esque “Better Days (A Song for the End),” whose enticing melody boasts an unexpected bluesy twist, perfectly reflecting the bittersweet nature of the song’s lyrics.
Celeste Amadee is a pro. She writes beautiful, catchy melodies and lyrics and executes them flawlessly. Her playing, her arrangements, and the exceptional musicians and producers with whom she surrounds herself are all indicative of her musical prowess. But most importantly: while sure, her classical and jazz voice studies at PSU may have helped, she has the spark of a skilled musician and a talented singer-songwriter that no tuition can buy. Hear Celeste’s full EP at her Bandcamp page