San Diego based band Sometimes Julie, fronted by singer/songwriter duo Monica Sorenson and Rick Walker performs “provocative indie rock with strong Americana influence.” Joined by Michael Heater on drums, Bruce Paul Allen on bass, Alberto Moreno on lead guitar and Anthony Sarain on sax, flute and keys, Sometimes Julie planted its roots in 2012 when Sorenson and Walker met at a karaoke bar in San Diego. Sorenson was looking for a new outlet in which to express her poetry and Walker had 20 plus years worth of musical compositions that needed lyrics. Fast forward to June of this year and you have Breaking the band’s third album.
Musically, the album is partly a throwback to classic with southern rock and country influences. Themes within the lyrics include relationships, loss and protest. After a listen or two you’ll hear some resemblances to artists such as Janis Joplin, Heart, Melissa Etheridge and Sheryl Crow. The opener “In My Bones” starts off with a familiar beat that reminded me of classic Pat Benatar – couldn’t say what song of hers – but, this one has great chemistry and a great guitar solo. “Breaking” has more of a smoky country feel to it with its sultry swaggering beat and lyrics centered on breaking off a relationship. “Satisfied” features a little throwback to something that sounds like Heart, but this one also sounded fresh and new to me. The message in this song is positive and strong – “Go on and claim my prize / Don’t wait, don’t be upstaged / Let it out and cry / Let myself be satisfied.”
“Picking Up The Pieces” channels a little Janis Joplin with a country rock sound and organ keys accompanying the words that sing about being fooled again by a pretty face that double crossed you and left you out in the cold. I thoroughly enjoyed the next song “Send Me A Sign.” Sorenson here sounds a little like Alanis Morrisette and Melissa Etheridge but of course it’s her powerful chops all the way through. Lyrically, the song is about asking for a sign from somewhere or someone – “A voice is calling, is it you? / Have you come to talk to me.” I liked the words for their humbleness and humanity and I thought the guitar solo is fantastic, too.
“Looking Out for Me” starts with a full rocking beat and guitar intro and beginning with the second verse Rick Walker joins Sorenson on vocals. This number has more of a romantic bluesy feel with its lyrics promising – “I'd lay down my entire life /Just to see you dance and watch you fly / Please don't question me, don't ask me why / Trust my heart and let me hold you tight.”
The last tune is what I think we need more of these days – a protest song. “I Won’t Go Quietly” starts off with a deep bass and drum beat chugging along with heavy guitar chords joining in that are oh so nice to the ears. I loved the rhyming to Sorenson’s words – “Resist, oppose, stand up, and demand change / Insist, expose, the last one to stand reigns / Persist, and know together we can claim /The rights we hold, a given, preordained.” The shout singing towards the end makes this one a sure crowd pleaser.
By the looks of it, Sometimes Julie is well connected through many social media platforms; check them out there or perhaps at a future live show in the San Diego area.
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