Who Should Buy This: Travelers, wanderers, people in love, and those looking to dive into tranquility through song.
Artist: Lauren Mann
Genre: indie, singer/songwriter
Music Rating: 7/10
Lyrics Rating: 9/10
Sounds Like: Ingrid Michaelson, Lenka, Regina Spektor
Interesting Fact: I think I listened to this album about a dozen times before I realized there was a human on the album cover. I thought it was just a beautiful abstract painting! (Sorry. Didn’t see you there, Lauren.) To me, it was a beautiful parallel to how I feel about the music, and it makes me love it even more.
Best thing About this Album: I wanna say the French in track #10, but truthfully it’s the ambience of the journey that is so gracefully conveyed throughout the album. It’s hard to pull off, but the specificity in this album doesn’t detract, because it’s a template, not a stamp.
One thing I wish was different: Some tracks don’t have the very best production, but I’m actually really impressed overall. It adds to the charm, and it kind of reminds me of early Ingrid albums (which are fantastic, btw). If we as consumers want better production value in music, the artist needs more resources, and that means fan support in dollars and marketing. Go, go, go! Make the world a better musical place!
Website: Lauren Mann
Tracks: 13-16 depending upon perspective
*Singles: idk, bro. This album isn’t really geared toward single moments that jump out and grab you by the face. This album is a complete tale and is about the bigger picture of the voyage. This is not an album of snapshots; it’s a ride that you go on.
Favorites: Brave Face, Beautiful Place, Hibernate, I Wanna Know, Show Me the Way, Wooden Heart
First of all, I just have to say a giant thank you to Lauren for putting a big ‘ol smile on my face! It was a smile of wonderment and discovery. It was a smile of memories and anticipation. It was the smile of nostalgia and wanderlust, the rekindling in my heart of the familiar and the unknown. While this album is not what I would ordinarily gravitate towards musically (or technically for that matter), the themes and purpose spark truths in my humanity that draw me towards these songs in an inescapable fondness of rediscovery. When I heard this music, I thought of three people in my life whom I love Dearestly, and for that, the love was extended to the music.
Speaking of technicality, this album is full of wonderful and clever little lyrical gems that invoke, provoke, and inspire the human heart and mind. I’d love to share with you some of my favorite lines from each track.
“Plant our roots hand in hand. Always be with you.” – Idyll I
“Let’s write a new beginning.” – New Beginning
“Who are you supposed to be? Are you slave or are you free?” – Brave Face
“The world is a beautiful place. You don’t want to go it alone.” – Beautiful Place
“I want to see your face looking at me in the rain and find our sense of adventure all over again.” – Talk of Leaving
“Time is both friend and foe, never leaving us alone.” – Hibernate
“Buried treasure in your eyes” – Idyll II
“If we pick up the pieces, we’re stronger every time.” – I Wanna Know
“If I ever get down to the bottom of this, will you help me make it back to the surface?” – Make Smooth
“Je connaissais seulement cet univers.” – St Lawrence
“When we get home from our travels, let’s be still for a little while.” – Idyll III
“Nothing will ever be the same. History is something we can’t escape. When it seems like the end, begin again. Begin again.” – Oregon
“Somewhere along the way I felt alone. Somewhere along the way I carried on.” – Show Me the Way
“You are fire. I am water. When you’re weak I give you strength.” – You Are Fire (feat. JJ Shiplett)
“We’ll never be really, truly free until we let go of the world and all it holds for something more.” – Wooden Heart
“This ocean for you and I is home. We’ll plant seeds and watch our loving grow.” – Idyll IV
That’s it. If you loved these songs as much as me, please support Lauren Mann by purchasing the album from her website or on your favorite digital music store (iTunes, Apple Music, Google Play, Amazon, etc.)
She has a wonderful system set up with this album to ensure that it gets to as many hearts and ears as possible. You get to choose how invested you are in this music! Pay what you feel for a digital download, purchase a CD, get a traditional black vinyl, or a fancy limited edition gold vinyl. There is also some great merch to peruse here. I know (for my part), I started out by downloading the album for free to see what it was all about. As soon as I gave it a listen, I knew I would be writing about it here and immediately went back to order some more. (I personally think this album was made for the vinyl format!) Also make a note: while shipping is a little high, the prices listed are CAD. So for you Americans: prices look more steep than they actually are.
Click here to read through the full lyrics from this album.