On the surface, Imelda May can come across like a one-woman update of The Stray Cats. The Irish vocalist wears cartoonish 1950s reform school fashions and sounds tough enough on rockabilly rave-ups like "Pulling The Rug" and "Psycho" to draw more comparisons to Eddie Cochran than to Wanda Jackson. But May also has an outsized talent to go along with her big voice and Mayhem illustrates that she can handle any ‘50s style thrown her way: country, jazz, jump blues or the kind of soul-burners that Adele and Joss Stone excel at. Although she’s a major star in Europe, May has yet to crossover in the States. Her roots rock vibe doesn’t really fit into any radio format, which is ironic considering that honoring American music is what she’s all about.
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