Mo Kenney
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Mo Kenney

Dartmouth, Canada | Established. Jan 01, 2012 | INDIE

Dartmouth, Canada | INDIE
Established on Jan, 2012
Band Folk Rock

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Music

Press


“Mo Kenney is the 22-year-old protege of Joel Plaskett, who produced, co-wrote and played on her self-titled debut album. The solid collection of 10 folk-pop songs never falters, though it does get off to a slowish start due to a front-loaded selection of unarresting singer/songwriter fare. The sparseness of the first half does offer a good introduction to Kenney’s inviting vocals, which are light without being airy, and often dip low and grow rough. Her lyrics are crystal-clear, sometimes directed at an unnamed other she’d like to get closer to but can’t. Things attain lift-off halfway through, when Plaskett steps in on several co-writes and the production gets exciting. Scene Of The Crime splays into loose and woozy rock, In My Lungs features gorgeous fingerpicking and ghostly backup vocals, and first single Déjà Vu has Plaskett’s rhyme schemes and catchiness (and vocals) all over it. Which isn’t to say Kenney can’t pen a remarkable tune on her own. Melancholy closer Carnivore, in particular, shows big-time sophistication." - Carla Gillis, Now Magazine


“This 22-year-old Halifax singer-songwriter sounds extremely poised and confident on her debut album, and that’s only partially due to the support of her producer: Joel Plaskett. In fact, the spritely Kenney could easily be mistaken for Plaskett’s kid sister, not just because of their physical resemblance, but also their shared knack for writing punchy folk-pop. With ten tracks clocking in at just over 33 minutes, Mo Kenney gives a sufficient taste of her talents without overstaying its welcome, moving from contemplative, McCartney-esque opener “Eden” through to an inventive and highly appropriate cover of David Bowie’s “Five Years.” In between, Kenney wears her coming-of-age trials as a badge of honour, already sounding like an old pro on “Sucker” and “I Can’t Talk.” While Plaskett’s stamp is most prominent on “Déjà Vu” by far the album’s catchiest song, on which he also sings back-ups Kenney sounds most in her element on the languid “Scene of the Crime” and “The Great Escape.” On these numbers, she allows herself to get lost in the music, lending her vocals a sensual, Cat Power-like quality. Even without Plaskett in her corner, Kenney would be a shining new talent on the Canadian folk-rock scene, but together they’ve created a gem of an album.” - Jason Schneider, Exclaim! Magazine


"There’s an incredible weight to Keneny’s voice, almost a world-weariness that you don’t expect in someone so young." - J., Quick Before It Melts


“Mo’s voice is silky smooth, her lyrics are smart, she has wonderfully inventive, memorable melodies, and an understated yet commanding stage presence. Check her out, folks – she will not disappoint!” - Brad Roberts, Singer-songwriter


“We all loved Mo. She’s the “real deal” hope to do more work with her.” - Ron Sexsmith, Singer-songwriter


“I’m on the road over 220 days a year and see a lot of openers and I was gobsmacked. She was stunning. The room was hushed and everyone was engaged and listening. I can’t wait to watch her develop. She’s the real deal.” - Steve Poltz, Singer-songwriter


"It’s beautiful. It really is. It’s artistically arranged, with the songs flowing into each other, and the music itself is composed skillfully and elegantly; each beat a careful hum, each continuous note an ode to itself and the album as whole. Her voice is smooth and steady; (surely she could chat anybody up with her fluid delivery) her guitar playing is gorgeous; it’s like she has almost some sort of aura that draws us all to her soft songs and her quiet lyrics." - Sofia Mikhaylova, The Scene Magazine


"A voice pure and solid as a forest filled the room, chasing distracted thoughts into the dusty corners. Then her voice changed into a haunting golden mist, and the silence began to dance around it like an excited friend." - Colin James Gibson, Audio Reckoning


"Nova Scotia is an oyster, Mo Kenney can be its pearl. Here’s why: in her voice we found the colors of some little wooden houses in Halifax, in her figure on stage, holding an acoustic guitar we found a defensive attitude like if she was Fort Edward’s blockhouse moved to Reykjavik… But way more young and rich. Rich of talent, emotions, passion. Young like a Mayflower." - Roberta and Niccolò, Reykjavik Boulevard


"Arrive early to the Joel Plaskett concert in Cochrane, Alta and the ones that follow, so as to witness singer songwriter Mo Kenney performing first on the bill. The fellow Haligonian is by turns graceful and gutsy, recalling the likes of Sharon Van Etten and her kind of sharp, tuneful players." - The Globe and Mail


"In a musical world where singers dress up their voices with Feist-y warbles or Joplin-esque grit for added gravity, Mo Kenney cuts through the din with quiet clarity, silencing busy rooms with a voice that’s a few notches above a whisper. Singer-songwriters are a cottage industry on the East Coast, and the region continues to turn out some very good ones, but Kenney has stood out from the latest pack of young bloods by being the eye at the heart of the storm, with a doleful gaze into the middle distance on stage and songs that reveal inner thoughts while only hinting at darker secrets." - Stephen Cooke, The Chronicle Herald


"She’s arresting in her intimacy, disarming in her individuality. She doesn’t sound like other women, not the fine fellow writers of the East Coast, nor the matron Canadian of all with an acoustic, early Joni. These are songs straight from her, a kind of free-flowing observational style of life moments, with plain language but deep meaning." - Bob Mersereau, CBC East Coast Music


"Her solo compositions, such as “Sucker” and “The Great Escape”, are just as striking, blending humour and heartfelt emotion with a riveting vocal delivery. Kenney’s take on Bowie’s “Five Years” is the album’s sole cover and it’s a knockout." - Noah Siegel, New Canadian Music


“Fellow Nova Scotian Mo Kenny was up first with a stunningly beautiful set of really laid back folk from her new CD which she recorded with Plaskett in his Dartmouth studio. She told stories and joked about bringing so much water on stage and probably could have played all night long for the enraptured audience of approximately 300 people.” - L.A. Beat


"It feels awkward to just blurt it out, but Mo Kenney has achieved a craft on the level with artists including Ani DiFranco, Stevie Nicks, Jolie Holland and Neko Case on her self-titled debut. Such a statement feels awkward because the album in question is her first; those other artists had to work for years to refine their talents and chops, but it’s hard not to feel like you’re bearing witness to the birth of a new star when you hear this record." - Bill Adams, Ground Control Magazine


“She seems perfectly content to be what she is and to sing about what she knows. This is what makes her and her songs so appealing.” - Ellen Reid, Crash Test Dummies


On her sophomore release, the ambient folk-pop record In My Dreams, Mo Kenney has not only discovered the true her, she’s tapped into that and breathed forth one of the most engaging, alluring, intoxicating, honest and distinctive albums this country has produced this year. - Mike Bell


Mo Kenney has had a few trustworthy CanCon players – Joel Plaskett chief among them – in her corner for a while now, and In My Dreams makes it pretty clear why. The 24-year-old Halifax singer/songwriter’s second album signals the brash, career-making arrival of a cutting Canadian voice fit to join the likes of Emily Haines and Tegan and Sara Quin on the export-ready A-list. And Kenney’s is a voice, make no mistake. - Ben Rayner


Bold, confident and fierce. Those words also describe Kenney's voice, a loud, husky alto reminiscent of Kim Deal's and Sharon Van Etten's, while her fingerpicking guitar style brings Elliott Smith's to mind. - Carla Gillis


Discography

The Details (TBA Fall 2017)

In My Dreams (September 2014)

Mo Kenney (September 2012)
New Scotland Records 7" vinyl single "Eden" b/w "The Great Escape (April 2012)


Photos

Bio

With two critically acclaimed records to her credit, Mo Kenny is ready to unleash her third recording. The Details is Mo at her strongest . . . and most vulnerable. She delivers a powerful punch with her newest record, a promising young singer-songwriter is now a dynamic artist emerging from the studio with a collection of attitude-driven indie rock that will pull at your heartstrings. Mo has won numerous awards and captivated audiences with performances in Australia, Europe, the UK and the US.

Awards and Achievements

2016
JUNO Award Nomination Adult Alternative Album of the Year – In My Dreams
International Acoustic Music Awards Nomination Best Female Artist – In My Dreams
ECMA Award Nomination Album of the Year
ECMA Award Nomination Solo Recording of the Year
ECMA Award Nomination Video of the Year
ECMA Award Nomination Fans’ Choice Video of the Year

2015
The U.S.A. Songwriting Competition 1st Place Winner (Folk) – “I Faked It”
Nova Scotia Music Award Winner Recording of the Year – In My Dreams
Nova Scotia Music Award Winner Pop Recording of the Year – In My Dreams
Nova Scotia Music Award Winner Solo Recording of the Year – In My Dreams
Nova Scotia Music Award Winner Music Video of the Year – “Telephones”
The Coast “Best of Halifax” Award Winner – Best Female Solo Artist(Gold)
The Coast “Best of Halifax” Award Winner – Best Pop Artist/Band (Silver)
The Coast “Best of Halifax” Award Winner – Best Songwriter (Bronze)
The Coast “Best of Halifax” Award Winner – Best Artist/Band Most Likely To Make It Big (Bronze)
Unsigned Only Songwriting Competition Semi-Finalist – “Telephones”
ECMA Award Winner Pop Recording of the Year – In My Dreams
ECMA Award Nomination Song of the Year – “Telephones”
ECMA Award Nomination Fans’ Choice Entertainer of the Year

2014
The U.S.A. Songwriting Competition Top 20 Honourable Mention Winner - “Sucker”

The U.S.A. Songwriting Competition Folk Category Finalist - “Sucker”

CBC Shortlist Award Nomination Best Song/Earworm of the Year - “Telephones”

ECMA Award Winner Pop Recording of the Year - Mo Kenney
ECMA Award Nomination Songwriter of the Year - “Sucker”
ECMA Award Nomination Solo Recording of the Year - Mo Kenney
ECMA Award Nomination Fan’s Choice Entertainer of the Year
Music Nova Scotia Award Nomination Entertainer of the Year

2013
2013 English SOCAN Songwriting Prize Winner
Canadian Folk Music Award Winner New/Emerging Artist of the Year
Music Nova Scotia Award Winner New Artist Recording of the Year - Mo Kenney
Music Nova Scotia Award Winner Pop Recording of the Year – Mo Kenney
Music Nova Scotia Award Winner Female Artist Recording – Mo Kenney
Music Nova Scotia Award Nomination SOCAN Songwriter of the Year – “Sucker”
ECMA Award Nomination Rising Star Recording of the Year – Mo Kenney
Ottawa Folk Festival Supernova Award Winner
CBC Radio 2 Top 100 Songs of 2013 - “The Great Escape” (#73) and “Sucker” (#34)

2012

CBC Radio 3 Bucky Award Nomination Rookie of the Year

iTunes Best Singer Songwriters of 2012

Band Members