The Path Of The Clouds (Bella Union)
Boston-based Marissa Nadler’s ninth solo album is melodic and mystical. Her ethereal voice mesmerises the listener and makes lyrics about murder, suicide and prison breaks seem palatable. The subdued tone is set with Bessie Did You Make It – a song about a canoeing accident – and carries on through the 11 tracks, but this album doesn’t need bells and whistles, and anything overly upbeat would spoil the mood.
Nadler’s voice is her instrument, while guitars strum in the background. These short ballads – the longest of which is just under five minutes – don’t give up all their secrets immediately and that’s what makes them interesting. This is an album that takes its time: one can pay attention to the words or simply listen to the sound and soak up the atmosphere. Despite its brutal subject matter, The Path Of The Clouds is a gentle and relaxing affair.
words LYNDA NASH
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