Album Reviews

Sharon Van Etten: Because I Was In Love [Album Review]

Sharon Van Etten

The introduction to Sharon Van Etten came, quite surprisingly, through a recent comment on my track review of Julie Peel’s “Unfold”. Even more shocking was the discovery that I had prior communication with Van Etten on other affairs. So she was more than gracious to provide me material in which to pump out this review. Because I Was In Love has the lovely female-fronted folk often reserved for masters like Mirah, Laura Gibson, and Julie Doiron.

Sharon Van Etten begins Because I Was In Love with the minimalistic “Holding Out”, finding solace alone with her guitar, where her voice holds its weight in creating the overall melody. Its subtleties lead perfectly into “Keep”, where Van Etten splits her vocals into harmony. Guitar, too, expands into a consistent finger-plucked melody as opposed to merely vocal accompaniment, and a soft organ joins for mystically romantic backdrop. By “Tornado”, Van Etten has added tambourine and a light electric guitar. It’s not until closing track “It’s Not Like” that she breaks free and increases volume.

Sharon Van Etten’s music fits that timeless style of folk-pop that extends from the ever present modern on back through time. Because I Was In Love is music that never gets old, and filled with songs that are continuously relatable. That the music Van Etten creates is powerful in all its soft melodies and hushed tones merely fills it with more greatness.

Sharon Van Etten: For You [mp3]

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Because I Was In Love by Sharon Van Etten

[CD, 2009]

1. Holding Out
2. Keep
3. Have You Seen
4. Tornado
5. Much More Than That
6. Consolation Prize
7. For You
8. I Wish I Knew
9. Same Dream
10. I Fold
11. It’s Not Like

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