Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Listen: Big Thief - "Mythological Beauty"

photo by Shervin Lainez
Though they certainly didn't, it certainly felt like Brooklyn foursome Big Thief came out of nowhere with their excellent debut album Masterpiece. Their songs were raw, visceral, and just plain good and it seems Big Thief have tons more where that came from. Later this year, we'll see the release of their follow up Capacity. "Mythological Beauty" more or less continues the pitch perfect alchemy the quartet achieved on Masterpiece and runs with it. There's more tales to tell and Adrianne Lenker makes quick work of it - stringing a series of stories and reflections connected through time by a sort of emotional impression.

"Mythological Beauty" sees Lenker examining her life and comparing it to that of her mother's when they were similar ages. Though they're essentially at incredibly different places, they're connected by a love that essentially transcends the very notion of time rippling from before Lenker was even born through her childhood to Lenker as the young adult she is now. Though inspired by series of stories experienced both first and second-hand, there's a sense of Lenker gaining a sort of life lesson from revisiting them. It's a song featuring some absolute awing turns of phrase all trying to put into words an ineffable feeling of unconditional empathy Lenker has and feels. "There's a child inside you that is trying to raise the child in me" Lenker sings and it perfectly encapsulates this feeling Lenker has of childlike tenderness and understanding echoing into adulthood through the person that raised you. "Mythological Beauty" is a love song to Adrianne Lenker's mother and a beautiful one at that as the band come together (with new drummer James Krivchenka) to construct an ornate nest for Lenker's devotion.

Big Thief's sophomore record Capacity will be out June 9th on Saddle Creek Records and "Mythological Beauty" will be seeing a vinyl single release out this Record Store Day on April 22nd. You can pre-order the album now.

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