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"I recently mastered Kim Lamothe's new album,which I found truly wonderful and a delight to work on. Her skillful performance, evocative lyrics and undeniable presence make for a mesmerizing whole. I'm really looking forward to hearing more from her."

-Jeff Lipton, Peerless Mastering

"Lamothe's organic approach to this

semi-autobiographical tale matches perfectly:

like the title flower, it unfolds, breathes.

Here she ably straddles the line between art

and uncomfortable truth."

-Matt Keefer, Mercury Magazine


The Kim Lamothe Tree-oh officially in bloom

Mystery achievement

By CHRIS CONTI  |  November 24, 2010

Tiverton-based singer/songwriter/guitarist Kim Lamothe doubles as a full-time organic gardener and owner of Greenlion Design, and her new sophomore release, Mystery of Viburnum, provides the perfect landscape for the Kim Lamothe Tree-oh to fully bloom. The follow-up to her '08 solo debut Philodendron, Mystery of Viburnum (available at cdbaby.com and iTunes) captures a coolly confident and engaging musicians with a vocal approach that exudes "a pleasant tension of emotion, expression, and range," as accurately summed up in the bio. Lamothe loves her some Joni Mitchell and, like contemporaries Ani DiFranco and Regina Spektor, she can brighten the room while breaking your heart. Viburnum is a 2010 must-have, hands-down one of the year's best local releases.

No one knows Rhody native Kim Lamothe like fellow singer and close friend Allysen Callery, who also happened to drop one of '10's finest earlier this year with Hobgoblin's Hat and has shared dozen of stages statewide since they first met on the circuit six years ago. Callery recalled the early encounters.

"Kim was totally raw, dropping F-bombs on stage and wearing her hair in cornrow-braided dreads," Callery told me. "She looked like a little lion, and her performance was impossible to not react to. But it was her poetry that really made me listen. What she had to say, her honesty and bluntness, was pretty incredible, and it's all still there today.

Those unique rhythms are now fortified by Brendan Whipple on upright bass (he also played on Hobgoblin's Hat) and drummer Eric Hastings, a Seattle transplant who saw Lamothe and Whipple play a set at AS220 a few years back and offered his services.

"This album is a marked evolution, for sure," Lamothe told me earlier this week while chatting up her CD release gigs, "even though my name is out front Eric and Brendan incorporate killer ideas and we fully develop them into 'Tree-oh' songs."

Lamothe presents plenty of introspective moments on Viburnum, and understandably so, given their creative origins. "A lyric or two might pop into my head, and I'll bring those ideas to a huge box of poems I wrote when I was 19," said Lamothe. "I had an old typewriter and I'd constantly write about my life at that time, so I'll dig through and piece songs together."

Lamothe isn't shy about freeing up some skeletons, including her mother's struggle with alcoholism on "Fool" ("My mother taught me to be sneaky enough, just like she fooled me/Yeah, over the river and through the woods I will fool you"). "I'm glad to open up about my alcoholic mom, it's a vulnerable feeling but I want other adult children of alcoholics not to feel so alone," Lamothe said. "For awhile I struggled with releasing some of these songs because they're so directly about my mom's drinking, but I'm glad I did now.

"It's like, 'fuck it,' you know?"

I asked about some of the standout cuts on the album, including "Diesel Dad" (one of the tracks featuring former Brown Bird guitarist Michael Samos on lap steel). "I sent out a message asking friends what objects or images reminded them of their father," Lamothe said, linking and likening dear-ol' dad to the "dusty Jackson Browne records on the shelf" and "the bottle of moonshine tucked way under the sink."

Lamothe's delivery enhances every track; on "Reclaim/Rearrange," she bounces along while sneaking in the line, "Wakin' up smellin' like peach and ginger, hot sex, beer, and regret." She summons Joni Mitchell on the title track ("You know that song about how I could drink a case of you") and welcomes the impending drama on "Looped." "Bloom" and "Red" are top-notch heartbreakers; the latter song and "Fool" ranks among her best yet. And the riff alone on "Rocky's" is pretty stunning.

" 'Rocky's' was written just a few days before we hit the studio, just me, my guitar and a few mics, and one take," Lamothe recalled. "It felt perfect, and everything Eric and Brendan added to it was perfect." An estranged loved one drops by on "Rocky's," but Lamothe will have no part in playing the victim: "I like it that you just stopped by to say hi/You sit on your side of the room and I'll sit on mine."

Similar to friend Callery, Lamothe excels in delivering a unique spin on the female acoustic songstress. "Kim's folk always seemed a little urban and funky to me, even though she lives in the country and works with flowers all day long," Callery told me, beaming with pride.

"Watching her grow through the years has been an honor, and seeing her perform with the band gets me teary-eyed," she said. "Kim and the Tree-oh have a lot of fun playing together and it shows.

"I am so proud of how far Kim has come, and I can't wait to see how far she goes."

THE KIM LAMOTHE TREE-OH + ALLYSEN CALLERY + CHRISTOPHER MOON | Friday, December 3 @ 8 pm | Speakeasy @ Local 121, 121 Washington St, Providence | FREE | 401.274.2121 + KIM LAMOTHE + TANIA ALEXANDRA | Friday, December 10 @ 7 pm | Sidebar Bistro, 127 Dorrance St, Providence | 401.421.7200 | kimlamothe.com


Before writing this review I have the album of the singer unknown to me many times listened to Kim Lamothe. You have an album or the time to get to know. Sometimes I let the disc is not twisted day. At one point attacked her autobiographical texts and the musical notes in place. It is therefore very few artists take the space of my room with so pure and unadulterated sense to fill as Kim Lamothe does on her new album"Mystery of Viburnum. She is an American singer, who in the nineteenth poems and now presides over a company that designs and constructs gardens. The title of her new album "Mystery of Viburnum 'refers to the white and pink flower with its lovely fragrance. The guitar of the 30-year-old Kim Lamothe sometimes reminiscent of Joni Mitchell's guitar attacks.

Her emotional and energetic way of singing the listener will certainly not immune. With her warm vocals and acoustic guitar, she brings her with folk, rock and jazz songs to life injected. The musical accompaniment by Brendan Whipple (uprightbass) and Eric Hastings (percussion) is extremely simple, but more than effective. Room to be able to showcase her beautiful voice. On the CD "The Mystery of Viburnum is no room for standard ballads or songs you hear once and can already sing or humming along. This album contains twelve real songs, the listener both modest and the fiery side of Kim will discover. Songs that include her parents take care center. You are my Sunshine Diesel and Dad are treated with a heart breaking surrender and sung with an emotional honesty. "Mystery of Viburnum 'Kim Lamothe(tree-oh) is a formidable album with headstrong, intriguing melodies and heart-felt lyrics.

-Johan Schoenmakers Alt Country Forum