Sharon Van Etten is an accomplished singer-songwriter with a voice that could break hearts and Remind Me Tomorrow is a wonderful way to showcase it
Breaking away from the traditional acoustic guitar accompaniment that many female singer-songwriters favour, Van Etten instead uses ominous bass undertones across the record that juxtapose superbly with her heavenly vocal.
Opener I Told You Everything begins with delicate pianos and frailty in Van Etten’s voice, but as echo-laden bass and guitars are employed, her harmonised vocals kick in – bringing real depth to the piece. This self-harmonisation is a frequent appearance across the album’s tracks, but it never proves unimpressive.
There are times on Remind Me Tomorrow when her pop side surfaces, such as on Comeback Kid, which has strong flavours of Arcade Fire, but again her vocals move the track away from ever sounding too twee.
Seventeen, a lament to her younger days, No One’s Easy To Love and You Shadow also continue the pop influence, but it is on the multi-layered atmospheric tracks where the album truly hits the high notes.
Take the slow, pulsating bass synth of Jupiter 4, which provides that earthy contrast to Van Etten’s rich vocal. Similarly on Malibu, we have a dark undercurrent running through the track for her to bounce off.
All this comes together on the magnificent Hands, which pulls all these elements together in truly epic fashion. Hands-down, the best track on the album
Release dates: 18 January 2019
Standout track: Hands
For fans of:
- Arcade Fire
- The Pretenders