Rough Trade Session (ep)
Sub Pop Records
Weyes Blood’s Titanic Rising is probably my single favourite album of the year. It’s the first record of 2019 that I remember making my head spin. I want to wrap it in cotton wool and keep it always – I have listened to it a lot but I want to keep hold of it and look after it, don’t want to ruin it.
She’s doing something profound – it’s like Karen Carpenter returned to sing a bunch of Father John Misty songs. It’s fucking ludicrous how good it is, frankly. It makes me go gooey with language and I flip out and babble and don’t fully know how to articulate how I feel about it. And I tried. Oh boy I tried!
Those creamy, dreamy arrangements were just gorgeous and crucial – but on a live set of sessions released here as an EP Natalie Mering takes the arrangements down, strips the songs back to piano and voice and shows that there’s so much sass and soul in her lyrics – big humour and heart in equal doses – and that killer voice doing double shifts too.
Where I’d thought some of the arrangements on the parent-album were full-bonkers Van Dyke Parks, it’s funny to hear the piano outro to this version of Everyday feeling rather Beach Boys-esque (still).
Something To Believe is extra gorgeous here as a solo piece; that Karen Carpenter tone and feel still shining, maybe more so.
Wild Time is just a couple of guitar here, no piano, no drums, and it’s lovely and it floats – and feels extra-magical.
And opener, A Lot Has Changed (called A Lot’s Gonna Change on the album) is just a scene-setting Andrew Bird-esque intro-piece.
But spent the 14 minutes here – to either get you in the mood to go back to the album-proper, or just as it’s own thing. Weyes Blood is a special talent and it’s all here actually. In just the three-and-a-half songs served here. It’s like a show-reel. But nothing “showy” about it. It tells you the story. It should tell you if this music is for you or not. I think she’s a revelation and now I have the EP of the year to go alongside the album of the year.
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