She/Her/Hers (2017)

She

(Artist: Natalie Grace Martin – Genre: Pop – Release Date: August 16, 2017)

Pop music as a genre can often be a tricky proposition. Much like fast food, it is fun to consume but usually not very satisfying. It can be a lot of sugar and glitz with little honest content or emotion behind it.

Natalie Grace Martin is a pop singer-songwriter from Wadsworth, OH. She is a girlfriend, parent and transgender activist. Her newest effort, She/Her/Hers, is as charming and unexpected as the woman herself.

Coming on the heels of a three-year stint of self-professed writer’s block, Martin wrote and produced She/Her/Hers in roughly two months. The resulting effort is a candid romp through the heart and mind of a thoroughly happy woman.

The album’s debut single, “On the Off Chance,” explores the universal notion that “nobody is a perfect for me as you” in a meaningful and sonically contagious manner.

Martin soars on the deliciously unconventional “Maybe I’m Wrong,” which is about the fear and doubt of coming out.  The girl’s got vocal chops.

Inspired by the recent passing of Chris Cornell (of Soundgarden/Audioslave/Temple of the Dog fame), “Try Your Eyes Again in the Morning” is a persuasive and dramatic suicide prevention song that implores the listener to hold on just a bit longer until a brighter day arrives.

However, my favorite track is the ridiculously infectious “The Wrench.” Hung on the premise that sometimes you just have to let that right person in your life despite them not fitting into preconceived plans. It is stupid-catchy and will worm its way into your head. This song has all the earmarks of a summer banger.

She2

Paying homage to Billy Joel, Elvis Costello, Cat Power and D.A. Wallach (of Chester French), Natalie Grace Martin has written a personal, yet undeniably joyful album. So much pop music focuses on the backend of the relationship. Only once things have soured do artists take pen to paper. There is something remarkably refreshing about work that is honest and vigilant, yet irresistibly jubilant and grateful. Martin has masterfully blended meaningful content with poppy goodness. She/Her/Hers is an accessible, relatable album of compelling contemporary music.

She/Her/Hers is set to drop August 16, 2017. Martin is hoping to crowdsource the funding to help her complete the project. (Visit the GoFundMe.com account for the album HERE.)

Natalie Grace Martin performs weekly at the Aqueduct Brewery (529 Grant St. #106, Akron, OH., 44311). She mixes originals with some terrific cover selections. Admission is free.

She will also be performing at 3 PM on August 26 at Hardesty Park (1615 W. Market St., Akron, OH., 44313) as part of Akron Pride 2017.

Click HERE to visit Martin’s SoundCloud account. It features previews of songs from She/Her/Hers, as well as some earlier work.

-Ted Zep

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