Halifax singer/songwriter Amelia Curran describes her craft as “expressing the inexpressible, a means of describing the indescribable," a skill that comes to good use on her latest album Hunter Hunter, released last year in Canada and now readied for a U.S. release September 21 (Six Shooter). As a document of a broken relationship, Curran's latest -- her fourth in six years -- was originally supposed to take just a few weeks. But after nearly two years of on-again-off-again writing and recording with producer Don Ellis, where she tossed out more than half of her songs and rewrote many, the album emerged from the emotional ashes with scars and bruises intact. "I wanted to describe the chase for love when you've been cut down by loneliness and can't think of anything else," says Curran.
Hunter Hunter has proven to be a watershed album, emotionally and professionally. Nominated this year for the national music honor the Polaris Prize, the critically acclaimed project was awarded a Juno this spring for Best Solo Traditional and Roots album. "The Mistress" exemplifies Curran's ability to marry a stark blues-folk melody to a tumble of searing lyrics, jagged shards of anger and hurt piercing the poetry in a brutal if beautifully worded confession of life as "the other woman". "Ah Me" tells of "lovers with their bleeding hearts who talk like silk and touch like darts" as acoustic guitar lines echo in sparse accompaniment. "The cloud is gone and took the silver lining along" she sings with resigned despair. At the end, the lyrics have a cathartic effect, slate cleaned, tears dried. "Sadness", says Curran simply, "demands to be communicated." The remarkable Hunter Hunter does just that.
Amelia Curran - "Goodbye Montreal" (from the album Hunter Hunter)
Amelia Curran - "The Mistress" (from the album Hunter Hunter)