LANUE is a new project from Sarah Krueger. She collaborated with an impressive array of musicians. Krueger worked with Steve Garrington (Low) and Sean Carey (S.Carey, Bon Iver) to assist with production and instrumentation while relying on JT Bates (Pieta Brown, Taylor Swift) on drums and Ben Lester (Field Report, Sufjan Stevens) on pedal steel guitar. The string arrangements are by Ryan Young (Trampled by Turtles) and guitar work by Erik Koskinen.
The album contains ten songs and is a blend of folk and rock. Musically, I didn’t feel this album was pushing into new territory but the delivery was often exceptional. In addition to that there’s no denying the top notch production and it creates a warm glaze over the music.
“Wars Intro” is up first and is a minimalist intro that revolves around a vocal and somewhat ominous atmosphere. It works well enough and captured my interest. We get our first fleshed out sounding song with “September.” The song revolves around piano, guitar, drums and some atmospheric elements. At the center of the song is the vocals which drip with melancholy and reflection in a way that sounds familiar. My first thought was Mazzy Star but the mood itself had a sense of familiarity.
The mood extends with “Oil Fields'' which is a highlight. I loved the vocal melody on this song. It gets stuck in your head but in a way where you don’t want it to end. “Pull Through” is next and as the song implies sounds a little more hopeful in some ways but still contains a foundation of melancholy and reflection.
“What I Love the Most” is the most joy filled song yet and in my opinion the most single worthy song. The chorus just pops and connects with the medley the first time I heard it. The push and pull continues with the slow burn on “Mexico” and the reflective yet uplifting “July” which could be another single. “Mississippi” is great and “Something Scared” continues to meld elements of melancholy and reflection. Last up is the anthemic and celebratory “Days in the Sun.”
This is an exceptional album from beginning to end. The ebb and flow is seamless and a journey I highly recommend taking.
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