'Revival' some reviews of Revival: 'Powerful, folk/pop played with finesse and integrity from an artist whose voice is rich and earthy. It takes a couple of listens to get past the beauty of van Zalm's voice and fully appreciate the quality of the songwriting underneath. These are songs about the spirit, the land and feelings that well up inside of us as we work to blalance lives wrought with the stresses of living in a big city world.' Mark Garnaut - Conscious Living ' With the comfort of some extraordinary musicians including Richard Mellick( keys), Blair Greenburg (djembe), Svetlana Bunic (piano accordian), Chris Roodenrys (electric guitar), Debra Anderson (double bass), Warwick Factor (midi bass) and Buzz Bidstrup (acoustic guitar, drums, backing vocals and production)~ Peggy sings with a real depth of range. Her vocal kept me on the edge, waiting for that wail that rarely comes, great control at retreating from the obvious. REVIVAL remained on our multi disc player for some three weeks - a great feat considering the competition in this house, and the first six or so listens it still felt like I'd heard it for the first time, it is not the album full of hooks and radio friendly schmaltz - this is heart felt understated talent. Revival features deep and rich musicality, I have enjoyed my growing rapport with this album and Peggy's subtle, sensual and powerful delivery.' Kaeleen Hunter, METTAMUSE/SINGING UP THE WOMEN 'Revival sourced much of it's inspiration from the Australian landscape and vibes with a positive energy whilst it's instrumentation (including piano accordion, double bass and traditional African percussion) adds depth and sophistication.' Monty James - Inpress Peggy writes: 'Yes, and then after 'Soul Magic' came Revival in 1998. A six tracker recorded by Buzz Bidstrup ( best known for his work with the Oz band Gangajang). We recorded it at a few locations but mostly down at 'The White House' Jimmy Barnes (Cold Chisel) studio at Mittagong, south of Sydney. It's a bit of a snapshot of what the direction of the music was beginning to take. Not so much that self searching as in Soul Magic...but more of a consolidation..a broader frame of reference... I can see it being the bridging process in a sense ... and my travels to central Australia and my time living in the Blue Mountains outside of Sydney helped me to realise how important the landscape is to my emotional and psychological wellbeing. The content of my music was naturally progressing and continues to evolve through the understanding of a personal/spiritual connection with the land... my own kind of Australian Dreaming...with much respect and acknowledgement to our own indigenous ones and I know it is a process we all are integrating in our own ways in this critical time in the history of the world. The 'Revival' song is an acknowlegement of the reconciliation process a unification song...people are nature Revival is about dealing with these issues in a celebratory way.' Peggy Van Zalm 'Living in My Diary...' How it all started... 'Before I even had any intentions of writing 'songs', I used my guitar and the words that came to me as a way of venting my feelings, perhaps as a sort of spontaneous eruption, very fleeting and in the moment and totally for myself. It was in the days when I was an art student and I guess for me the emphasis was very much on the exploration of expression...not the end product and definitely not in a conventional way. I was listening to a lot of Joni Mitchell and taking in art bands like Talking Heads and later it was Cocteau Twins, then later Sinead O'Connor. I was interested in sounds and ambiences and the voice as a musical instrument, but also I was interested in progressions and emotive power and how that could be expressed moodfully and dynamically. I started keeping a diary of my thoughts, my obsessions and complexes, it was extremely private and painfully so. My music was like an aural extension of that diary, full of confessions and questions meant only for me. A place for processing of 'self': a means of evolution and resolution. I remember there was a definite time when I decided to make a song that I could sing again. I had to teach myself from a tape. A lot of the chords and notes on the guitar were improvisations some unrepeatable, but the main body of the song was there, I could reshape it to be played again. One summer I made the move back to Perth from my self imposed country retreat and suddenly realised I had this strong desire to perform my songs. A landmark realisation, well this is how I see it in retrospect and putting it into practice denoted a 'coming out' as psychologically and socially it was a decision to be more engaged with people. Even to this day I feel that my lyrics and music continue to be an expression of a life and a soul in progress, music is the soundtrack.' ....... Peggy's Personal & Musical Biography... Originally from the small farming/surfing/vineyard town of Cowaramup near Margaret River in Western Australia, Peggy first made her way over to the East Coast on a support tour with co-Perth-expats 'The Triffids'. She was lead vocalist, played guitar and penned a good number of the songs of her then band Martha's Vineyard. The band were snapped up as part of the first wave of signings to the fledgling rooArt label in 1989. 'Martha's' eponymous album was well received by critics, radio and national audiences alike & touring followed including supports with such luminaries as INXS, Saints, Weddings Parties Anything, Paul Kelly, Mental as Anything, the Go Betweens, Eurythmics and Simply Red. The single 'Old Beach Road' lead the way for the album with overseas releases in UK, Europe, Japan and the USA. So it was that on a rising wave of acclaim Peggy left the band to go it solo in 1990 - heading off to Europe as part of a posthumous promo tour for the band. The time O/S included a six week stint of writing with X 'Martha's' double bassist Philip Kakulas - (now of Black Eyed Susans based in Melbourne and an original member of The Triffids) a number of those songs appear on Peggy's solo debut 'SHINE/SOUL MAGIC' ......
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