With these lyrics from Home, the opening track of Diyet’s debut album, The Breaking Point, the singer/songwriter from Burwash Landing sets the mood for this CD.
She reflects on her hometown, a tiny, remote First Nations community, with its beauty and its struggles.
Her community has a tie that brings her back, and is a source of inspiration and hope for the future.
“Don’t leave it this way/Don’t turn your back and walk away/This old dirt road still knows the way back home.”
Diyet’s poetic lyrics are heartfelt and true, full of hope and inspiration for positive change in her community. They are matched beautifully by the music, written by herself and her husband, Robert van Lieshout, who also provides drums, percussion and acoustic guitar.
Moments of Silence is a good example of this, a rock ballad in which she sings:
“In these moments of silence that reveal the truth in us/We don’t have to say or look the other way/All the world is dancing in your eyes/And I know for sure that I am going to stay.”
Another song, Luanna, seems to be a love song written to Kluane Lake. Diyet sings of wanting to leave Burwash to study music at University of Victoria, but being drawn back again.
“I was a girl I dreamed of anywhere but here/I was on the road when I was 18…All these roads lead to your shores/I hear my voice, I hear it in yours.”
Diyet’s voice is clear and controlled, often sounding like a cross between Jann Arden and Leela Gilday, and is perfectly suited to carry the emotion and the meaning of her lyrics.
Recorded at Old Crow Recording, and produced by Bob Hamilton and van Lieshout, Diyet is backed by van Lieshout, Bob Hamilton’s guitars, Annie Avery’s keyboard, Australian bass player Goby Catt, and backing vocal from Hamilton, Catt, Emma Purser, Sarah Hamilton and, in duet, Sophisticated Cavemen’s Lara Lewis.
Darryl Havers, of the Vancouver band Brickhouse, provides additional keyboards. Avery and Havers’ keyboards stand out as support for Diyet’s emotional vocals, particularly on Come with Me and Moments of Silence.
On iTunes, this album is categorized as World Music, but the songs draw more on radio-friendly folk rock and pop, with some traditional aboriginal elements, such as the drum and chant near the end of Home.
Each song has its own style and influence: Trippin, is a funk jam, and the lead guitar riff on The Breaking Point is reminiscent of African jive.
The only thing missing from the CD is a lyric sheet. Despite Diyet’s skill as a lyricist, Diyet doesn’t provide them on her websites either. Her audience will just have to listen harder and pay closer attention. They’ll be well-rewarded for their efforts.
Diyet’s The Breaking Point is available from her website, diyetmusic.com, CD Baby and iTunes, at various locations around Whitehorse.