Album: Better Than Brand-New
Release date: June 30, 2017
Expressive. Singular. Close-to-home.—All descriptors of Edmonton-based Martin Kerr’s newest album, Better Than Brand-New. U.K-born and Canadian-raised, Kerr is sinking his teeth into the personal side of songwriting, each of his twelve tracks reveling in their sheer demonstrativeness.
That’s not to say that Better Than Brand-New is without its catchiness, however; its first track, a song of the same name, has a consistent bop to it, all hard edges sanded off to create a soft, easy summertime listen. Complete with Kerr’s downy vocals and a hopeful tinge to the background instrumentals, “Better Than Brand-New” sets up the tone of the remainder of the album whilst still leaving room for audiences to be pleasantly surprised.
Early-album track “Little Screens” plays on these expectations: not dissimilar to the ever-popular, ever-positive Andy Grammer, Kerr spins out a song that’s the musical equivalent of throwing your hands up at the apex of a rollercoaster. Carefree, replayable, and toe-tappingly irresistible, Kerr mixes the personal with the radio-worthy, and the result is a track that would be hard-pressed not to put anyone in a better mood.
Heartening to a T, Martin Kerr’s Better Than Brand-New will easily find a place on any Canadian’s summertime music shelf.
My name is Emma Sloan. I am a Canadian content writer, columnist, and published poet. As of 2018, I have five writing credits to my name including Beatroute Magazine, This Side of West, The Martlet, and BALDHIP Magazine, but that list continuously being added to. Follow me on Instagram at @emmacsloan for writing updates and news.