Selina Martin - London Music Club - Friday July 9th 2010

By: Alex Young

On tour for her oddly titled new album “Disaster Fantasies”, Selina Martin brought her brand of homegrown Canadian rock and roll to the London Music Club on July 9th, to give the crowd a taste of her fearless honesty. Martin’s raw garage rock musings about love, loss, and living in a big city came across with all the cadence and sincerity on her album, and truly came alive thanks to the subtle yet energetic rock band behind her. Martin’s sound includes all the magical pop hooks of lo-fi legends like Pavement and Norah Jones, mixed with dreamy pop breakdowns spun out of control with rigid distorted angst that froths with optimism.

Between the swinging melodies of Martin’s vocals combined with lyrics about everyday life, it was hard to hear what was more charming - the stories within the songs or the songs themselves. “Breathe In” had Martin crooning about an ex-lover who is gone from her life but not from heart or mind, when she sang: “You fell into my arms/like a landslide/like a mile wide crumble/take my humble advice/be a mountain”. On the flipside, Martin cranked out some attitude with the song “No Form”, which talks about stripping away all the layers of her life to find who she truly is underneath everything she owns.

The band’s acoustic cover of Rush’s “Spirit of Radio” was a surprising twist that put a fresh spin on a classic rock song. For the final track of the evening, “Public Safety Management”, Martin had her hands on her hips as she sang with authority while the band roared behind her.  By the end of the night, Martin ultimately made the audience realize that rock and roll isn’t rocket science; all it takes is an original voice, great grooves, and a little honesty.