Dennis Ellsworth & Kinley Dowling
Album: Everyone Needs To Chill Out
Label: Self Released
The word ‘harmony’ is defined by a dictionary as “A pleasant musical sound made by different notes being played or sung at the same time”. The first collaborative album by Dennis Ellsworth and Kinley Dowling fits that definition perfectly. Both vocally and instrumentally they blend together to produce an album that truly lives up to its’ name, with ten songs that are easy on the ear, and would certainly help any listener to relax and chill.
Dennis began his musical career as a bored high school student who filled his notebooks with more lyrics than schoolwork. As the singer in a punk rock band, those lyrics were then yelled out. But he learnt guitar and in time, as his website biography says, ‘found his true path setting stories and feelings to the music he created’
Kinley Dowling hales from Prince Edward Island, and is a highly sought after string player who has contributed to over 50 records. More recently her abilities as a singer-songwriter have come to the fore with her beautiful solo album ‘Letters Never Written’ released in 2016, and now this album with Dennis which is a dream pairing of musical talents.
Within just a few opening bars of the first track, the gentle acoustic guitar and the rich vocal quality of Dennis lead quickly to the falling of a few notes from a piano and Kinley’s vocals joining. At that moment the listener will realize there is musical magic here. With a faster tempo, the second track ‘Virginia’ puts Kinley’s voice to the fore, and as the song develops Dennis seamlessly joins her with perfect harmonies.
As the fourth track ‘Snowing in Amsterdam’ melted into my ears with its’ beautiful elegiac feel and lyrical storytelling I had fallen completely in love. “I’m sitting here drinking, staring at the wall, in the silence and I’m thinking of you, that home in the heart, oh the Charlottetown winter, it’s snowing in Amsterdam too. And I walk through the streets with the Saturday crowd, and the smoke from the coffee shops too, I’m in love with the boats, the drift, the canals… full of tourists with nothing to do”. Great lyrics.
By the eighth track ‘Peaks of Heaven’ the excellent song writing is always evident, “I don’t know if we’ll live our dreams, sometimes they drift off on the breeze, carried away by the weathervanes, I don’t ever want you to leave….” A lot of the music on the album has an almost haunting feel, yet is such a joy to listen to.
Everyone Needs to Chill Out is a beautifully composed and produced album that is perfectly titled, gentle on the ears but packing a lyrical punch that benefits from repeated listening.