“Smoke Show” – Kali Lynn

The narrator in Kali Lynn’s “Smoke Show” is well aware of one inescapable fact: her man’s no good. Equally regrettable: she wants him anyway.

Co-written with Andrew Shaver and blog favorite Mason Caviness, the first single off the Illinois native’s forthcoming EP (due later this summer) is a muscular track full of throbbing instrumentation and blunt declarations. Rather than place the blame squarely on her beau, Lynn wisely acknowledges the potential consequences of the situation (“These never agains never did me well”) with forthrightness. Cognizant of the illusory nature of attraction, the narrator seems to know the relationship won’t last, but in the meantime, she’s content to fan the flames.

Of particular note is the contrast between the narrator’s acknowledgement of her own weaknesses and Lynn’s powerful vocals. As a result of Lynn’s impassioned delivery, the narrator never comes across as a bystander in her own fate; she’s a willing participant in her life, even if her choices aren’t always the best.

As a showcase of Lynn’s talents, “Smoke Show” is an appealing first impression.