The first thing you’ll notice when you listen to her new album is its thigh-high boots and cleavage. It is self-aware and assertive and it will place fingers on your head to turn your face towards pursed lips. Sharon Van Etten just walked into the room and STARED YOU DOWN. If she was a barefoot Elizabeth Bennett in her previous Because I Was In Love, she’s Sarah Plain and Tall in a leather jacket and a biker gloves in Epic. It’s louder, full of the hard kind of love and the new kind of hate, and just might be an album of the year.
Right away, first track “A Crime” has curtains of guitar declaring Etten’s soft heart has gone and a chorus of ‘Never Let Myself Love Like That Again’. It sets the tone throughout, and she charges ahead with a more callous attittude. Not dismissive, but instead self-preservative. Just when I was gonna ask her out too… The pulsing kick drum of “Peace Signs” delivers a left hook from another version of Etten you didn’t even see. Now you should begin to realize you underestimated this lady with a six-string. “DsharpG” is the masterstroke of Epic. It’s tragically too short at 6 minutes and’ll ABDUCT YOU. Thou shall be in ball with Jodie Foster when it reaches the ocean, all along swearing you were gone for weeks. And the only thing you’ll have to claim proof with, is the feeling on the edges of your brain. It’s seriously and wickedly amazing, and best sung along with using Baritone.
You can download two of the album’s final tracks above (“Don’t Do It”/ “Love More” + two other surprises), which have been released/leaked as singles very recently. The whole of Epic ends at 32:11, and you’ll be left with your wide eyes in hand, wishing you could find the person that inspired such spirit. You’ll shake’em silly and then give tearful hugs because even though the album is tragic and sad, you wouldn’t change a thing.
The whole album is streaming free HEEYA.
Sharon Van Etten singly singing “It’s Not Like” from Because I Was In Love
[Sharon Van Etten Website] – She’s touring with Junip this Fall!!!! Huzzah!!!!
[Sharon Van Etten Myspace]
(Epic is out October 5th, via Ba Da Bing Records)