REVIEW: Kim Lenz Explores Haunting Themes on “Slowly Speeding”


Kim Lenz is generally known as a rockabilly artist – particularly because of the growl she can achieve in her vocals. You can call Slowly Speeding a rockabilly album, and you wound’t be wrong. However with its dark themes, a lot of this album leans a little more toward psychobilly.

One recurring theme in psychobilly songs is that of pining for the spirit of a lover. Lenz carries on that tradition with “Bogeyman.”In a dark tone Lenz sings, “I don’t ever want to leave your side, my bogeyman.” The sparse instrumentation adds to the spooky feel. The beat is minimal. The guitar is not only minimal, but also muted. This would be a good song for a Halloween stroll through a graveyard.

“Guilty” is a more uptempo song driven by the thumping bass line. At a couple points in the song, Lenz lets loose with a sound that is kind of a blend of a train whistle and the howl of a coyote. The song cruises along nicely until the lyrics about seeing a lover on the other side, at which point the song abruptly ends.

The title track is a complete change from the songs that precede it. It opens with a lonesome guitar sound and a deliberate bass line. This song is made for slow dancing in a dark honky tonk. Hearing Lenz’s vocals on this tune might be enough to give you goosebumps. The harmony vocals are equally enchanting. Don’t be surprised if you find yourself joining in when she sings, “going zero to 60 with you.”

Lots of songs have been written to describe being turned on. Not many of those songs describe the feeling as percolating. With its clean guitar sound and bass line that is sure to get you moving, this has the feel of an old rockabilly song. Lenz even teases the title of the song by singing, “You got me per per per per percolating.”

With its haunting themes, the mood on this album is similar to Cry of Midnight by Rockin’ Ryan and the Real Goners. It intrigues because it straddles the line between psychobilly and rockabilly. Regardless of style, Lenz commands each song with her powerful vocals. Slowly Speeding will be available everywhere on February 22. Order your copy here.


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