KAIA KATER

The banjo’s recent return to favour has seen the likes of Otis Taylor and Rhiannon Giddens reclaim the instrument as part of African America’s musical roots. Twenty-three-year-old Kaia Kater from Québec studied mountain music in West Virginia and writes songs from the here and now. Her second album manages to triangulate bluegrass, Nina Simone and Toni Morrison, with numbers provoked by school shootings (Paradise Fell) and Black Lives Matter, next to fiddle-and-banjo folk standards and an opener, Saint Elizabeth, that details a woman being stalked. Recorded in a day, it’s an intense, mostly solo affair, with Kater’s banjo and rich voice supported by bass, muted trumpet and backing vocals.              -Neil Spencer, The Guardian

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