Suzanne Walker releases new LP
If you’ve ever wondered what it would sound like to throw a handful of blues-influenced, roaring electric guitars, delicate acoustics, mischievously flexible grooves, passion-laden vocals and evocative folk harmonies together into a melting pot of melodic charms, you’re in for quite the special listening experience when giving the new album from Suzanne’s Band, Back to You, a spin. Back to You is the official sequel to Breathe, an extended play that Suzanne’s Band released to much acclaim back in 2018, and if you liked what you heard on that first offering, you’re going to be very impressed with what the Mia Suzanne Walker-led group has put together for us in this, their latest release. Right out of the gate in “Fault in My Stars,” Walker straddles a buoyant beat with the seamless command of a seasoned studio pro, and while she’s not as much of a veteran as her affectionate performances might have us believe, she’s nevertheless rolling like a deeply talented professional here, in songs like “I Almost Said I Do,” “Don’t Give Up Yet,” “Write a Book” and “Look Up,” all of which would make for marvelous singles in their own right.
As far as production quality is concerned, Back to You is the most polished effort we’ve seen from Suzanne’s Band thus far, and you needn’t look much further than the acrylic detail on both “Wonder When” and the title track to understand exactly what I mean. There’s not a stone left unturned in the big picture of these two songs, and really any of the other eight that join them in the tracklist here, with the pendulous groove of the strings creating a miniature sonic hurricane in “Wonder When” that is just as sumptuous to consume as the slow-motion stomp of “Gonna Rise Up” is. From beginning to end in Back to You, we’re forced in one way or another to react to whatever aural intricacies the music might contain, and having sat down with this album on more than one occasion (without any external interruptions, as it was likely meant to be heard in the first place), I admit that there are a seemingly endless supply of said intricacies for us to sort through. Could it be a touch overwhelming for newcomers? Maybe, but when taking into account how melodic it is, I seriously doubt it.
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Indie critics haven’t been able to stop talking about Suzanne’s Band and Mia Suzanne Walker herself in the last couple of years, and those who are curious as to why need to take some time out to spend with the stunning Back to You, which debuts this January everywhere quality alternative country, folk and pop music is sold and streamed. Suzanne’s Band aren’t holding anything back from us in this release, and though I’m sure that we’re going to hear plenty more gems from this group in the future, this gives us a great idea of how much excitement we genuinely have to look forward to from this Walker-fronted harmony machine. Let it be known that Back to You is one of 2020’s first epic listens, not only because of its uniquely stylish finish, but because of its phenomenally talented designer.