Gemma Hayes: Bones + Longing

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Artist: Gemma Hayes
Genre: Alternative
Label: Warner Bros

Forever pitched (simplistically, if not condescendingly) as “Ireland’s alt.rock sweetheart”, Tipperary’s Gemma Hayes has flitted around the edges of mainstream acceptance for over 10 years, but for various reasons that killer song (of which she has many) refuses to hit home.

Her fifth album is yet another collection of lovely, woozy tunes, but this time around she is much tougher in thought and deed.

Songs such as Dreamt You Were, To Be your Honey, Dark Moon and Palamino are drenched in sonambulent pop/shoegaze-like textures that mix the dreamy with the spooky, and overall there's a sense that Hayes has become weary of the perception of her as a "sweetness and light" singer-songwriter.

Such an approach (which comes across as natural and not at all strategic) suits her well.