Emily Jane White – Blood/Lines (2013)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Time – 43:36 minutes | 918 MB | Genre: Indie Pop
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download – Source: Qobuz | Booklet, Front Cover | © Talitres
Emily Jane White is an American singer and songwriter from Oakland, California who has released five solo albums and toured internationally. In December 2013, White released Blood/Lines that included a contribution by Marissa Nadler. It was described as “a new stylistic development in her repertoire” and having a “neo-gothic feel”.
After releasing three albums in three years (2008s Dark Undercoat, 2009s Victorian America, and 2010s Ode To Sentience), Emily Jane White wrote over 100 sketches between January 2011 and October 2012. Her new album Blood Lines is a selected compilation of these songs. Recorded in a secluded studio in Sonoma County, the quiet environment provided Emily a place to explore new directions with artistic integrity and creative control, layering synthesizer, electric guitar, and multiple tracks of vocals into nine heavily reverbed scenes. With the help of friends and collaborators, Emilys worlds were diversified with strings, backing vocals, and heavy drums.
Since her career started, White has relied on a sweeping, dramatic sound, and her work has only gotten more grandiose as she’s progressed. White’s development as an artist mirrors that of PJ Harvey in many ways, and Harvey stands out as one of White’s key influences. Blood/Lines ends up being a culmination of sorts for White, as it finds her settling into a very comfortable creative groove. Her fourth album in as many years, Blood/Lines does demonstrate White’s remarkably rapid artistic growth. Here, she moves further and further away from the spare, guitar-driven moodiness that she’s done well so far (and that the likes of Scout Niblett continue to do) and towards a more sprawling, sweeping sound using an interesting method: the album’s nine songs were mended together from sketches instead of being written as full pieces. For the most part, it works. “Faster Than the Devil” stands out as an example of everything that goes right on Blood/Lines. It’s a brooding number that reaches a sort of grandiosity, anchored by White’s powerful voice and eerie backing vocals supplied by Marissa Nadler. Even stronger is “Keely”, where White’s vocals, backed by an evocative set of synth-strings, hit a peak of tenderness that becomes a high point for the album. Though it may be a missed opportunity at times, Blood/Lines still represents a crucial step in White’s development as an artist. Far from being the PJ Harvey/Kate Bush knockoff that she was unfairly pigeonholed as early in her career, White has found a unique trail to blaze, and there’s plenty about Blood/Lines that demonstrates just how great she can be. However, should she create the masterpiece that she has in her, it’ll be hard to look back on this album as little more than a missed opportunity.
01 – My Beloved
02 – Faster Than the Devil
03 – Keeley
04 – Thoroughbred
05 – Wake
06 – Dandelion Daze
07 – Holiday Song
08 – The Roses
09 – The Wolves