Time Bomb, Baby (2017)
Time Bomb, Baby is a heady explosion of lushly layered indie-pop that floats between charming quirkiness and a muscular sonic sensibility. The songs lovingly pay respect to 80’s auteurs such as Bryan Ferry, Peter Gabriel and Kate Bush while firmly riding a futuristic wave of swirling harmonies, shapeshifting guitars and thoroughly modern songwriting.
Time was always ticking until the burning fuse inside Sean Kelly detonated into his first solo debut album, Time Bomb Baby. As the lead singer, guitarist and songwriter for the critically-acclaimed, Independent Music Award-winning band A Fragile Tomorrow, Kelly has carved out his individual artistic path and emerged with enchanting songs that simmer with a smart, sensual glamour.
After experiencing multiple personal hardships, Kelly found refuge in his own studio, Low Watt Recording in Savannah, Georgia. There, he began exploring all of his creative ideas that eventually coalesced into the new collection while finding strength, healing, and even a newfound confidence within himself and in the resulting music.
Having played almost every instrument, Kelly’s songwriting and production skills also elegantly shine throughout Time Bomb, Baby. The subtle funk of “Let Me Be The First To Find Out” is dark and disco-y while “Syncopation,” “Poughkeepsie” and “In America” echo the danceable nature of Bryan Ferry’s Boys and Girls as well as Let’s Dance-era David Bowie. “Gold To Me,” featuring legendary bass player Gail Ann Dorsey (David Bowie, Lenny Kravitz), and “You Started It” tip their hat to Roxy Music’s seminal classic, Avalon. The album was produced by Kelly, with additional production by Ted Comerford (Jukebox the Ghost), and engineered by brother and bandmate Brendan Kelly.
“It was a dream project for me, but also a challenge to wear all of the proverbial musical hats” he states. “I had to trust myself entirely with the direction of the record instead of relying on bandmates to pull their weight. Once I let go of the fear and let it all happen it fell into place very naturally.”
Kelly’s own story began as one of identical triplets born with Cerebral Palsy. Tragedy first struck when one brother passed at a young age, which inspired Kelly to form his power-pop group, A Fragile Tomorrow, with his twin Dom and their younger brother Brendan. As teens, the group toured relentlessly with major artists like Indigo Girls, The Bangles and Toad The Wet Sprocket. The band released five albums including 2015’s Make Me Over (MPress Records), which earned an Independent Music Award for their collaboration with distant relative Joan Baez.
Late 2015, however, marked a turning point for the songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, producer and singer. While on tour with A Fragile Tomorrow in Israel, Kelly came to the realization that he might finally be ready to figure out what and who he was.
“I was with my band, driving to Jerusalem on a day off, when I started listening to Roxy Music’s Avalon. It was my morning routine on that trip, walking to a nearby cafe and listening to those songs,” he says. “This particular listen really made something click in my mind, and I knew exactly what my next move needed to be.”
Armed with a fresh perspective and an exuberant determination, Sean Kelly’s Time Bomb, Baby is a stroke of bold, modern romanticism that is both an homage to vintage alt-pop and a leap into the future that continues to push the musical envelope.
1. You Started It
3. Gold To Me
4. In America
5. No Sound
7. Let Me Be The First To Find Out
8. The Light
10. Ticking Like A Time Bomb
11. We're Getting Older, Brother