Sharon Van Etten
ba da bing!
the acclaimed brooklyn-based singer returns, this time ably assisted by meg baird (espers) along with cat martino & jessica larrabee (she keeps bees), with a beautiful new record that astounds as it elucidates, disturbs as it soothes.
while a lot of singer-songwriters dole out painfully obvious details about their own heartache, van etten writes & sings about the world she inhabits with a beautiful & uncertain curiosity. her songs are heartfelt without being overly earnest; her poetry is plainspoken but not overt, & her elegant voice is wrapped in enough rasp & sorrow to keep from sounding too pure or confident. the music possesses a fuller sound compared to the super-spare arrangements on her previous self-produced albums, but ‘epic’ still feels incredibly intimate, with lots of room to breathe & unfold. it's an enchanting mix that all soars but remains wonderfully rough around the edges.