Album Review: Laura Stevenson – ‘The Big Freeze’

Posted: by The Editor

Theatric, haunting as it is lovely, expertly dancing through these themes with harmonies and acoustics. My first impression of Laura Stevenson’s music came with The Big Freeze, a record that fell from its place outside of my regrettably small sphere of music. Within seconds, I had just one word: beautiful. Stevenson’s gorgeous voice is at the forefront of every number in a way that only a talent at album #5 can produce.

For an expansive listen, “Rattle At Will” and “Value Inn” will definitely do it for you. Off the latter, you need the electric guitar that punches you in the gut. The idyllic riff just might inspire you, not unlike the harmonies in charming, somber “Hawks,” beginning on its own and ending during “Big Deep,” a large song itself. It’s sharp, decided–a purposeful track, comparative to “Living Room, NY” and “Dermatillomania” with the way it builds upon itself. (“Dermatillomania” is wild, a true standout).

In a vision of witty, romantic lyricism, I was moved by “Low Slow” and “Lay Back, Arms Out” 100%. I’m a fan of imagery, metaphors, and dream-like haze, and the record opener embraced that with open arms. (See what I unintentionally did there)? Stevenson’s beautiful high register admits, ”I’m a broken record, come wriggle out from underneath me,” and I related instantly. The former finds itself serving as a climax from its spot at track 9 and a devastating (but gorgeous) climactic bridge. Brace yourself.

Life is filled with noise. Laura Stevenson in The Big Freeze makes that noise twinkle in brave, bold statements. It’s a phenomenal push into spring with ten tracks of incredible caliber.

Disappointing / Average / Good / Great / Phenomenal

Kayla Carmichael | @kaylacarmicheal

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