San Francisco based singer-songwriter Sonya Hunter’s melodic, lilting voice carries her new album “Sun in Mind.”
Liberally drawing on her influences, including Ella Fitzgerald, PJ Harvey, the Cocteau Twins and the Beatles, Hunter creates a mesmerizing sound that is singular and dynamic. The opening track, “Aquamarine,”establishes the jazzy influence that continues throughout the album, with a strong bass line and casually building guitar and drums.
“Aquamarine’s” pacing replicates the roller coaster on which the lovers in the song are riding sandwiched between the blues of sea and sky.
On songs like “Have you ever seen,” Hunter builds her melody around a moody jazz horn line that disappears seamlessly into somewhat dissonant vocal and guitar harmonies as the song progresses. There’s just enough brass in the beginning to make the sound haunt the song.
Hunter’s lyrics are wonderful too, telling whole stories in just minutes. As she sings in “Bells and Whistles,” “life’s too short to just ignore the poet standing at the door.” Hunter proves this on her fifth studio album, that she is not one to ignore.”Sun in Mind” is out now, but the record release event with the Crooked Jades is Sunday, Sept. 8 at the Makeout Room in San Francisco. For more information on this show, call (415)647-2888 and on Sonya Hunter, www.sonyahunter.com.