Angel Olsen - All Mirrors - - Soundblab

Angel Olsen - All Mirrors

by Andrew Bosma Rating:10 Release Date:2019-10-04
Angel Olsen - All Mirrors
Angel Olsen - All Mirrors

“If only we could start again, pretending we don't know each other” is a line that can easily describe Angel Olsen’s career up until this point.  For anyone who has followed her career to All Mirrors,  her fourth album, and the place to find that line, it’s surprising to see an artist so new completely recreate their sound on every record.  From the lo-fi bedroom pop of  Half Way Home to broad, impressive strokes of the orchestral paintbrush on All Mirrors, it seems like Olsen is unstoppable. Even individual tracks manage to sound unique from each other while remaining cohesive, which causes one to ask is there anything she can’t do?

All Mirrors showcases thick layers of synths and horns all behind the signature sound of Olsen’s rich, full voice.  Anyone with half a heart feels twinges of the pain being expressed, which is certainly no accident.  It’s a rare quality to be able to express a full range of emotion with such small inflections, but it seems effortless as this is experienced on every track.  The feeling of an entire season is captured on the tracks titled for them (Spring, Summer).  Clearly, this is Olsen’s strongest suit, as she captures the feelings that the listener has had before while singing about her own experiences. 

There are standout elements on every track, like the cacophonous drums on “What It Is”, or the counter horns on “Endgame’.  There’s something for everyone to pick up on somewhere in this record. This is the most varied and complex Angel Olsen album to date, but it’s also the most accessible.  Many will hear these songs and be taken to an exact memory as if the track was playing at the time.  Being able to experience emotions alongside the artist and create this feeling of empathy provides a deeply emotional experience like none other, proving Olsen as one of the most talented working songwriters at this time.  Each note, every beat feels placed for a good reason and works to provide a unified feeling from start to finish.  The only lasting sadness that comes with the album is the fear that it will never be heard again, as Olsen is sure to reinvent her sound again on her fifth record.  Still, it feels like a privilege to be a part of it at this time. 

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