Searchlight CD Review

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This review was published in Together Magazine

Chichester-based singer songwriter Cathy Burton’s name is well known among many Christians. Attendees of events such as Big Church Day Out, Greenbelt and New Wine are familiar with her intimate, reflective and inspiring shows that often have a very broad appeal. But in recent years, Cathy’s music has taken her far beyond summer Christian festivals. Since 2007 Cathy has had considerable mainstream success within the electronic dance music (EDM) genre. When Cathy teamed up with popular DJ Armin Van Buurens to release Rain in 2008, new doors opened. Cathy has now gigged Russia, Canada, USA, France, Holland and Ukraine.

Searchlight is the songwriter’s fifth studio album, and it is by far her best release to date. The album was written entirely on the piano, and tracks such as “Drug” and “Story” showcase the singer’s classical training. But by far the biggest surprise is the way Cathy’s love for EDM has been liberally applied throughout the record.

Many of the lyrics appear to be autobiographical, and in places quite dark and urgent. Opener “Searchlight” is about sending a lifeboat to rescue a girl trapped in the sea ‘they need to find her before the tide takes her further’, she sings, warning ‘She can’t stay afloat / She needs someone to call / Everybody call / Send out a searchlight.’ One track is called “Cage”, and another “Gun”. “Girl” is a more positive tune. ‘You fill me with love / You fill me with hope’ she sings. While her 2010 release Source Of Every Hour was clearly a worship project, the faith element contained within this album is more hidden.

Cathy’s voice sounds better than ever, and the songwriting contained on this record is outstanding. Every track has an unusual and surprising element to it. The mid-section of “Gun” is deliberately jarring and unsettling. “Time” has bells, whistles and beeps galore. “Intoxicate” is an intense synth led dance track - the remix of which has already featured on a Ministry of Sound compilation Addicted To Bass Sub Zero. Cathy should be delighted with this record – it’s pioneering and creative while also being easy to grab a hold of and immerse yourself in. Top marks all round.

23rd July

July 23rd, 2015 - Posted & Written by Together Magazine

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