Olsen pours heart out into “Burn You Fire For No Witness”

Photo by Jon B, via flickr

Roberto Lopez-Trigo/Contributing Writer 

Angel Olsen, the singer and songwriter of her self-titled band released their album “Burn Your Fire For No Witness” along with drummer Josh Jaeger and bassist Stewart Bronaugh. Angel Olsen is from St. Louis, Missouri and in recent years has been getting little snippets of fame and slowly but surely, making her way from the side stage to the main stage. The album “Burn Your Fire For No Witness”  flexes its musical value, using contrasts between their grungy folk-rock tracks and their simple, pure and haunting guitar and vocal tracks. As well as, the great chemistry between the bandmates, and a powerful yet vulnerable voice accompanied by lyrics that will leave you speechless. The only weakness that stops this band from really flourishing is the lack of rhythmic change and the daunting repetition of the harmonies.

In the song “Hi-Five” we catch a bit of this band’s heavier side. In the instruments exists a bluesy rock sound accompanied by a folky rhythm, a piano that enters mid song, and a distorted vocal harmony that really gives this song character. The most amazing part of this song is probably the personality of the lyrics that matches up so well with the instruments. Lyrically, the song is about two people who are lonely and through the common ground of their loneliness, they become invested in each other’s lives and see that they are stuck with each other. This song at first sounds like it should be sad because she is so lonely, but it is actually a happy tune about two lonely people who comfort each other so that they are a little less lonely.

Another amazing song that follows up after “Hi-Five”, is “White Fire”. This song is much slower and is characterized by guitar work that places you in the heart of Angel Olsen. When Angel Olsen enters, her tone is clear and her diction is crisp and clear. The voice captures you and forces you to take a journey, beautiful in its execution and forces the listener into a melancholy state. Although it is the longest song on the track, you never get bored of it and want to keep experiencing her. The contrast between this song and the last consistently occurs throughout the album. This creates a constant source of musical stimulus.

Lastly, the only thing that caused this album to be less than superb is the lack of rhythmic change in the last few songs. Which makes for the end of the album to be quite boring past track nine on the album. For instance, the song “Enemy” is a little bit boring and the vibrato in her voice is quite distracting. But other than that, the album is quite good. Through her songwriting you can see that she is pouring her heart out and in response, causes the listener’s heart to vibrate sympathetically.
“Burn Your Fire For No Witness”  is an album that should not be ignored, but a staple to any “faithful” Indie rock listener.


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