Elmore Magazine reviews Alive

Either get behind Kimberly Dill or get out of her way. Alive is her coming out party, showcasing Dill as a dynamic and powerful singer with a lot to say about treating women right. From the cover it seems this sweet young thing is dressed for the occasion. Never mind the splatter from the grease fires of fat funk groove that flare up occasionally in this bluesy soul kitchen.

Responsible for some of the lyric writing duties for Missouri’s Sister Lucille, the brassy Dill pushes the narrative of female empowerment to the fore on the stylish and sophisticated Alive, with the surging blues of “Respect Your Woman”—slathered in honking harmonica—and “W.O.M.A.N.” refusing to tolerate any sleazy impertinence. Don’t get the idea that Sister Lucille is prudish. The heat of sexual desire emanating from the writhing “Wanna Love You” is almost overwhelming, while the romantic “Think About You” couches regret and yearning in Muscle Shoals-inspired R&B tenderness and twinkling, golden guitar licks straight out of the Steve Cropper playbook.

Not just a low-riding vehicle for Dill’s undeniably expressive vocals, Sister Lucille exhibits strong, sinewy musical chops and versatility on Alive. With the seductive bossa nova noir of “Devil’s Eyes” a dark surprise, the gravitational pull of the slinky title track’s deep, shapely funk an undeniable draw, and a fiercely proud “99 Pounds” throwing its considerable weight around with a thick, tight and sunny swagger and plenty of horsepower, Alive is a master class in making all the machinery work seamlessly. Throw in some of the most radiant, well-rounded and shiny horn arrangements around, while following Jamie Holdren’s well-conceived lead guitar figures and maneuvers like a herd of sheep, and it’s easy to come away believing that Sister Lucille is indeed Alive and well, capable of recording warm, engaging material that pours out its blood, sweat and tears with passion and purpose.

Peter Lindblad, Elmore Magazine