Intuition out now on Beyond Beyond is Beyond
Milwaukee’s Kendra Amalie makes hard to categorize music, with elements of dark folk, twangy rock and dreampop. What really makes her unique is her finger-style 12-string guitar playing which is prone to some serious shredding just when you least expect it. Brooklyn Vegan (December, 2019)
Kendra Amalie splits the difference between brainy, full-band freakazoid rock and heady 12-string burn-outs. – NPR (December, 2019)
“She plays the acoustic 12-string both with an intensity that is rarely seen outside of the realm of metal, and possesses a Basho-like attention to tone and space.” Record Crates United (September, 2019)
“It’s a wonderous sonic ride into the moment when acoustic sounds blend seamlessly into a cosmic pulse.” Soundblab (September, 2019)
“At its core Intuition sounds like an artist finding her brightest beams while still leaving room to experiment, always rolling away from being pinned down.” Raven Sings the Blues (June, 2019)
“Kendra Amalie’s debut is an ethereal dive into unrestricted psychedelic waters…” Radio Milwaukee (June, 2019)
“Whether she’s dazzling on fingerstyle guitar, singing a sinister pop song, or experimenting with synths and droning feedback, all the elements carry her distinctive stamp and fit together in the strange but welcoming landscape of Intuition.” All Music (September, 2019)
A picture book of fluctuating emotions, so to say, saddened from the sky high to the death, all emotional facets are served. Crossfire Metal, (November, 2019)
Milwaukee Record 7/2020
Intuition out September 6, 2019
on Beyond Beyond is Beyond Records
by Jesse Jarnow
A sweeping introduction to an artist deep into their practice, Kendra Amalie’s Intuition is a star map to a new and developing sound space. An exploratory and (sometimes) shredding finger-style 12-string guitarist (both acoustic and electric), band leader, synthesist, new media creator, and experimental producer, the Wisconsin-based musician is also a songwriter occupying an ethereal zone between galaxy-brain cosmic transmissions and deep, personal expression.
There’s a concept and narrative arc to Intuition, too, the action moving from underwater locales to boat to city to global consciousness to farmland to the etheric plane and back to water. But the movements are equally a guide through the world(s) of Kendra Amalie and a culmination/transition/next step following a decade-and-change of cassettes and ambitious projects including Names Divine, 11:11, and a range of directions in collaborative improvised music and solo sound work. Shifting her music-making energies over the past several years, Intuition is the sound of a powerful new voice in focus.
The opener (and first single) “Breathe Underwater” is both an invocation and a headbanger, and–like every track on Intuition–almost nothing like any other track. Both rigorous and open-formed, Intuition contains multitudes, from the hypno-noise/freak-out/grace of “Become the Light” to the 12-string meditation “Improvisation For Mark Hollis,” from the psychedelic realizations of “Facets of a Holy Diamond” to the pedal steel-touched “Stay Low.”
Recorded with friends in her shed in Saint Francis, Intuition’s band included a core rhythm section of drummer Victoria Robison and bassist Sam Cook, with remote support from Taralie Peterson (cello), Al Moss (pedal steel), Peter McLaughlin (drums) and Jayve Montgomery (oboe), alongside the mixing effort of long-time collaborator Brian J. Sulpizio in Chicago. The live iteration of the album is more shape-shifting, encompassing solo performances accompanied by motion-controlled synths as well as more fully supported by a corporeal rock band. Intuition is a sound-based cross-section of a larger body of work. An arrival and a destination, Intuition is also surely a stopover, too. Meet Kendra Amalie.