Rosalie Bea worked for several years composing for other artists before working on her own music. She grew up playing piano but wanted to utilize guitar on her wonderful album Music to Breathe. So she learned how to play guitar and made it happen.
She worked with Francis Ledoux and states she was influenced by artists like Sufjan Stevens, Fleet Foxes and Alt-J. That being said she is on her own frequency here and across these songs develops a signature and inventive sound.
There is sort of this new age vibe to the music but it’s all done in good taste and drops all the cheesy aspects that tend to get thrown in that style of music. It’s perhaps something like Enya meets Joanna Newsome. There is a contemplative tone and everything she threw at me felt authentic and deep. She creates introspective and thoughtful music with successfully avoiding sounding pretentious and saccharine.
The album starts with “Calm” and you are greeted with a steady kick and warm guitar picking. Her vocals are wonderful. She pulls off a whispered hush with multiple vocal lines. The song quickly grabbed my attention and I was hoping the rest of the album would deliver. Spoiler alert - it does. “Walk Away” is a highlight amongst highlights. Her vocals are so varied and dynamic. The song is sweet and tender but not saccharine. I thought the vocals were infectious but also meditative as if I was hearing a mantra.
Joanna Newsome came to mind on “Poem.” There is something to the strings here which give this fantasy fueled imagery. I was picturing green landscapes and rolling hills. There are moments of pure bliss in this song that are on par with a band like Sigur Rós. For a moment on “Home” she sounds like a bedroom artist singing into her microphone. The song quickly blossoms into something much more grand with warm instrumentation which has a slight Brazilian feel. “Here and Now (feat David Lagacé)” is delicate and gorgeous. The two vocals lead work and the music reminded me of Vashti Bunyan.
“Summer Ends” is one of the most joyful and melancholy songs I have heard. I’m going to say this is one of the best songs I have heard this year. It’s magic and my words fall short for this song. She closes with “For your Lasts” which is an intimate and sparse song and a very fitting and beautiful ending.
This album is an absolute hidden gem. Everything from the production to the songwriting is exceptional. In my opinion she deserves much more attention. Listen and share. Highly recommended.
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