What happens when a horse trainer becomes a musician? She might just come up with something so new and inspiring, she attracts a colt following.
Kate Boothman is doing just that. Based in Toronto and born in Kendal, Ontario, the singer-songwriter is creating music that combines rock with lyrical and vocal craft reminiscent of Fiona Apple – but with even more range, dare I say. Influences of country and blues intertwine to create Boothman’s signature sound, which is both engaging and relaxing; this is no small feat, but she writes and performs with such grace, it comes naturally.
As an invited opener for acts like Wilco and Hope Sandoval (Mazzy Star), she has established herself among an elite group of musicians as a solo performer. Three years after her last release, I Am An Animal, Boothman has flipped her focus from the insane parts of ourselves to living in the moment and slowing down.
Boothman’s sophomore album, My Next Mistake is an introspective look at a girl who is stumbling through life, but never taking her eyes off the prize, through themes of sex, drugs, and rock ’n’ roll. Released April 20th, the project was a long one in the making.
Recorded in January 2019, Boothman and lifelong friend Thom Knox D’Arcy holed up at Taurus Recording in Northern Toronto for two snowy weeks, writing as they went. Because the album turned out to be void of precise genre, the duo coined the term “massage rock” – a category tailored to fit the LP. Melancholy piano and progressions create the backdrop for a moody narrative about knowing “you’re bound for glory, but worrying you’ll never be on time.”
“My Next Mistake,” the lead single and titular track, is a poppy-rock song that is the album’s ode to stumbling through life and love, but being appreciative of the journey. With an instrumental that sounds like something from a classic 90s teen rom-com, the song hooks you in right from the beginning. The soft, layered vocals of the chorus contrast the driving guitar, making a very dreamy, relaxing sound out of a rock song.
“I was everything when I was seventeen, you’d never see me fall,” Boothman croons in the chorus of “17”; a spot-on representation of reflecting on your 17-year-old self, invincible, and all-knowing. Equal parts sentimental and grievous, it’s the kind of song that sticks with you, making you think about growth, but also long for youth.
While there are no live shows lined up for Boothman due to COVID-19 restrictions in Canada, she will be performing her record at The Biltmore Theatre in Oshawa, ON, which will be filmed. With an album like this, one can only hope that she will be able to begin touring soon and bring this magic to life on the stage.
For now, Boothman is very engaged in her community, visiting local record shops where My Next Mistake is being sold on vinyl; we’ll just be waiting for her Biltmore performance to become available for public viewing.