Not So Black And White’
Having released an album full of self-penned tracks in 2002 and shining on the Broadway stage in musicals such as The Addams Family and Evita, Rachel Potter is certainly no stranger to the spotlight. With funds donated by fans through a Kickstarter project, her debut country EP ‘Live The Dream’ was released in 2012, paving the way for her to embark on what was probably her biggest challenge to date – entering season three of The X Factor USA, where she placed 11th overall in the competition.
Rachel describes her sound as a mix of country, pop rock and pop country and has stated Carrie Underwood, Miranda Lambert, Dixie Chicks and Rascal Flatts are some of her influences.
The album contains 13 tracks including the lead single from the project, ‘Boomarang’ – this is said to be about the feeling of love coming back after being lost, it was written with Potter’s ex boyfriend and features the vocals of Joey Stamper from band Anthem Lights. The album’s opener ‘Zero To Sixty’ mixies an infectious melody with a carefree attitude, making it a perfect Summer song, I can imagine driving down a road with the windows rolled down blasting this on a hot day.
Title track ‘Not So Black And White’ is another up tempo tracks which encourages the listener to live their life anyway they choose because ultimately there isn’t a right or wrong way to do so. The inspiration came from Potter’s days on The X Factor where she gained a lot of young fans.
It’s one of my firm favourites from the record and I’d love to see it become a single at some point in the future.
Several tracks in we come to ‘Tail Lights’, written by our very own Lucie Silvas, it’s the most relatable of all the tracks on the record for me.
The opening lyric “There’s a place I’ve never been, where nobody knows me yet” resonates with me, reminding me where I was 8 years ago. The song is this idea of leaving home, hitting the road with only the bare essentials in search of a new life outside of the town you grew up in. She makes it sound so easy with no display of fear whatsoever throughout bringing her carefree attitude into play once again.
It’s not all up tempo country pop though, tender moment ‘Moon Over Nashville’ was the first song Rachel wrote specifically for the album. With its beautiful intro made up of a guitar and harmonica alongside a soft sounding vocal delivery throughout, it’a one of the albums highlights.
To close the album Potter takes us back to her Broadway days with her version of ‘Somebody To Love’, with a little country twang. She reminds me a little bit of Glee star Lea Michele here and is a nice finishing touch to the album.
Overall it’s a brilliant debut effort with some very likeable tracks. I love how you can hear her Broadway vocal range coming through on some songs too, add that to her Southern twang and you’ve got a suburb mix.