A recent signing to the Sub Pop label, Lael Neale releases ‘Every Star Shivers in the Dark’, her first single for them.
It’s an absorbing two-chord hymnal which Neale cites as being her “…ode to Los Angeles, which always felt to me like the outskirts of Eden. But Los Angeles is not as it appears. Even in moments of isolation, I have looked for communion with strangers and, almost always, found it.”. There’s a delicate tension between the Neale’s laconic singing style and the drum machine and organ sound from the iconic Omnichord which she says was responsible for writing a “torrent of songs” and works to offer a basic foundation over which the tune can nursery-rhyme its magic.
The accompanying video is one of the few times I have seen home movie-style, low-res footage that actually serves to compliment the feel of the song rather than looking cheap. Shots of Lael Neale singing live in a darkened room are cut with blown out images of her floating in a swimming pool or walking around town. Like the song, it feels dreamlike and other-worldly.
If you’ve had a tough week you could do worse than putting headphones on and playing this track with your eyes closed. It could be the perfect sorbet to pause the week’s stresses, clear your mind and draw out a gentle lull from this modern lullaby.
Review by Paul F Cook