BETH KILLE BAND – Stark Raving Songbird

CD Reviews 29 Apr 2015

Beth Kille band Stark Raving Songbird cd sleeve OLBETH KILLE BAND – Stark Raving Songbird

(2015 Self-Release)

You can (soon) buy the CD here.

The CD Release Party for Stark Raving Songbird will take place at the High Noon Saloon on May 8th at 6 pm. Special guests Emerald Grove will open.


I love the feel of the six-string / the buzz of the amp / I like to bang my head / and rock with the band…” This is the refrain from “Just Wanna Play,” one of five new Beth Kille songs on this EP. It should be noted that this is the Beth Kille BAND and may not be quite the same solo singer/songwriter you saw in a local coffeehouse lately. Rest assured though, that is a good thing. Surely autobiographical, this song’s lyrics sum up where Kille is at these days: kicking some butt and not taking any names. In fact, as the song goes, she doesn’t care if you forget her name either, she just wants to play.

Kille’s authority has grown immensely in the last few years, not just because of what she plays, but because of what she does. Her work in the community with Girls Rock Camp, Ladies Rock Camp and the Madison Area Music Association is by now well-known, but you’ll see her turning up for many other causes as well, judging the Launchpad competition for instance, or lending her skills to any number of fundraisers. She walks the walk and of all the people in the city, she may appreciate and honor her fans the most.

The EP kicks off in hefty fashion with “Wayward Soul” and a heavy riff from guitarist Michael Tully who really makes his presence felt on all of these songs. He also pulls out a smokin’ lick at the end of the aforementioned “Just Wanna Play” that is just dazzling.

“Wrong Side of Gone” is the EP’s best track and may be the best thing Kille has done to date. A mid-tempo rocker, all the elements come together here. A potent message of domestic abuse, it’s a textbook example of how to pen a great song. Tony Kille’s drum pattern propels things along but also lends an ominous undercurrent. Tully’s guitar is beautifully stated.

“Everything Beautiful” is another winner, Kille teasing with an acoustic guitar and vocal intro before pushing things up to the red. It should be mentioned that in addition to holding down the bass, the EP was recorded and mixed by Michael Mood in his Alpha Bravo Studios in Cottage Grove. Mood’s addition to the band may be bringing some additional vigor as well.

It’s great to hear Kille cut loose vocally on some of these tunes and the band sure seems to enjoy ratcheting it up a few notches as well. I’ve heard them play some of these songs live and they were even more unrestrained on stage. Kille may be a stark raving songbird on this EP but it would be interesting to hear her go all the way to stark raving mad!


Photo by Frank Sommers

Photo by Frank Sommers

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About the author

Rick Tvedt

Rick is publisher of Local Sounds Magazine, formerly Rick's Cafe, Wisconsin's Regional Music Newspaper. He is also the Executive Director for MAMA, Inc., a non-profit organization that produces the Madison Area Music Awards and raises funds to promote youth music programs.

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