half waif’s new album, lavender, arrives at the end of the month; it’s one of our most anticipated releases of the year, an anticipation continuously bolstered by the strength of its string of singles.
on “back in brooklyn,” nandi rose plunkett sheds much of the constructs of her usual electro-pop veneer and is left with little else besides a handful of plaintive piano chords. plunkett’s voice is front and center in this sparing arrangement, the contours of her lead vocal swayed by the push-and-pull tendencies of the accompanying keyboard. these temporary spurts of momentum lend themselves well to a subject matter grappling with the fragments of a relationship, pieces that yet solidify a component of identity.
it’s a song about comfort that also acknowledges the constraints of said comfort, questioning its benevolence. alongside its release today, plunkett wrote an essay on “back in brooklyn” for talkhouse, further illuminating its backstory. lavenderarrives april 27th via cascine. listen to “back in brooklyn” below.
nandi rose plunkett sits at the helm of the synth-driven pop trio half waif, who are set to release their new full-length, lavender, at the end of april. the album’s cycle kicked off last month with an audio/visual masterclass for the swirling, invigorating lead single, “keep it out,” which set both tone and precedent with a commanding ease.
“torches,” the second track culled from lavender, pares back its predecessor’s propulsive nature while still retaining its sense of urgency. plunkett’s lead vocal initially sounds a bit muffled, as if she’s dictating vivid, contemporaneous observations of her surroundings through a field recorder; a comparative clarity is achieved as the arrangement fleshes out, culminating in the sudden, sharp declaration of “i do what i want / you won’t see me anymore.”
percussion reins “torches” in, as opposed to pushing it forward, allowing plunkett’s sustained synth chords ample time to soak into the soundscape and construct the mid-tempo monolith that it ultimately becomes. lavender is out april 27th via cascine. listen to “torches” below.
details about the forthcoming half waif album, lavender, were still scant at the end of last year when we named it one of our most anticipated releases of 2018. that anticipation has only increased as more information has come into focus; lavender is due out april 27th via cascine and comes front-loaded with an arresting lead single, “keep it out.”
nandi rose plunkett has always excelled at wrapping soaring melismas up in swaths of synth pads and leads, a pairing nearing its apex and on full display throughout “keep it out.” combined with celina carney’s stunning visuals, “keep it out” becomes a masterclass in dichotomy that stretches from its narrative to its arrangement and weaves through the most intricate of details.
that plunkett can distill all of this into a capsule of pop perfection – with a surging chorus to boot – is a testament to her enduring gift as a songwriter. if “keep it out” is any indication, lavender should be one of the year’s more memorable releases. check out the music video below.