Nothing Like It –  Courtney Farren (reviewed by Dave Franklin)

Courtney_Farren_-_Nothing_Like_It_(cover)As soon as the opening, titular track begins pouring from the speakers you know that you are on to something a bit special here. Special in that, far from being just another singer-songwriter, indie girl with guitar, Courtney Farren instead seems to build music from fractured emotions, deep thoughts and sad realities. She has the ability to shimmer like the light catching broken glass, chime like distant church bells in the deep of night and ooze lyrics which are amazingly personal but also universally relatable. Never has sounding impossibly lonesome felt so engaging.

There is a wonderful blend of light and shade, of lushness and minimalism, hazy warmth and sharp edges that evokes bands such as The Sundays or Mazzy Star, that same honesty the same openly worn emotions. Musically she wanders between the enigmatic and the unutterably beautiful, uses wonderful cascades of picked chords and languorous pianos, is sometimes direct and sometimes you feel that you are accidentally listening in to a very personal conversation.

It takes an exquisite musical brain to write songs which so deftly mix longing, weary resignation and dusty cracks of sunlight and yet sound wistful rather than melancholic, philosophical rather than sad. On the strength of these five tracks that is exactly what Courtney Farren has.

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