By Robert Dean
Senora May's new record All of My Love is light years departed from her prior effort, 2018's Lainhart. I don't know if the pandemic affected the mood of this release, but let's say it's plenty darker, whereas its predecessor was relatively light and, well, homey. Weaved throughout All of My Love is a definite through-line of tangible atmosphere offering the listener a glimpse into the real songwriter, which May gives us that when things feel a little bleak, she delivers the goods.
No two songs on All of My Love sound the same. It's always fascinating to hear an artist take risks, play with styles and see what sticks. The record has a variety of flavors with some Very Good Country Music. But, by and large, the darker songs on the record are the ones that shine, despite their inherent murk. The album's intro, "Intertwine," is haunting, moody, beautiful, and easily the album's strongest song. This is the Senora May I want to hear more from.
"Love you More" features a dirty guitar that conjures up Grunge-era feelings, and it works. It’s got serious “child of the 90’s vibes” and I’m here for that all day. Senora May's wheelhouse is playing with the songs that aren't so downhome country, but instead, the more she drifts into the rock and roll, the darker melodies, there's a sense of real identity. "Colors" is another strong track on the record, with its Cure-like guitar riffing.
Again, playing outside of the lines is when May does her best work. The record is strong. Experiencing whatever void May is capable of sticking her toes within allows the listener to make an unspoken agreement of “Yes, I know that feeling, too,” and that space is something we all can universally relate to, given the year we’ve all day. Some sunny music is great and all, but we’re still shaking off the frost and it’s going to take a little bit before we’re all feeling 100% human again. Till then, those bitter pills can taste like a candy we need.
Whenever Senora May is allowed to get out there and play this new batch of songs live, I'm positive they'll jump, All of my Love is a solid record. But, moving forward, I'd love to see Senora May release a few e.p. 's dabbling, just giving us a taste of what her darker side is capable of offering. I bet the results would be incredible. With a few hints present on All of My Love, we could be experiencing the crucial stepping-off point for a flower that grows in the moonlight.