What does Alison Sudol sound like?
Hazy intimate folk rock mixed with a little Welsh countryside.
The review of Alison Sudol – Still Come The Night
At the intersection of pregnancy, loss, worldly shifts and a deep dive into poetry is Alison Sudol’s new album ‘Still Come The Night’. It’s an intimate indie rock album with a lean towards folk but it centres on taking stock of seismic shifts. When your world stops but you are expected to march towards the next goal without processing what’s just happened, how can you truly move on fully?
This idea is what permeates ‘Still Come The Night’, as a tired and disillusioned Alison implores the listener to take stock of exactly where they are at. The album opens with the ethereal ‘Bone Tired’. It’s a hazy vocal smudge over beautiful acoustic instruments and foot shuffle percussion. It’s as if Alison Sudol is physically dragging the album into a resting place and saying “let’s take stock shall we?”. It is a powerful place to come from. The album decides to roam around like a brain slowing down to a crawl. Although its not sonically structured like it, this album is almost like a talk down to sleep. Sometimes it is a little chaotic (‘Playground’) where you can’t rest and things a bit skittish. Other times it is a moment of clarity when a panic attack comes to a close (‘The Clearing’). When the mind is clear, the music is idyllic and tranquil, like the warm and sumptuous sway of ‘Wasteland’. Throughout the album, Alison’s poetic lyrics tread the line between autobiographical and being just vague enough to make it personal to you too. She sites poetry as being a big influence and her strong sense of lyricism supports this.
Musically, half of the album reminds me of Goldfrapp’s “Seventh Tree”. Sudol’s higher register is crystalline and angelic. On tracks like ‘Mary of the Willows’, she creates sepia dreams of bright futures and her higher register works wonders. The other half of the album reminds me more of an Angel Olsen songwriter. ‘Come On Baby’ is a timeless work track, given a rustic production value. No matter what style she’s flipping between, there are moments of utter brilliance. The title track is a complete standout. Stripped back to distant electric guitar hues and an up-close soft vocal delivery, its raw delivery makes its message hit harder. If you can – grab the bonus track too. ‘Hand on my Heart’ is album worthy too as a soft and touching acoustic ballad.
Alison Sudol’s ‘Still Come the Night’ scratches a very specific itch. If you use music to process or reflect on situations and events, this will be a great friend to you. Alison can soothe your tired bones, mind and heart whilst hinting at rejuvenation too. Indie folk fans will love the rustic production too. With an emphasis on warm tape recordings and in-room hiss, you can feel the mother side come forward. This is one for keeps.
Recommended track: The Clearing
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