One of the albums that truly struck me this year was Angel Olsen‘s latest, My Woman, which I expect will top the albums of year lists come December. And it is the sort of title track of the record, Woman, that truly stands out.
In my eyes this album improves upon her previous records, as Olsen manages to convey a feeling through the sound itself, which is full of intensify and meaning – something that was left almost exclusively to the lyrics in the past. Olsen pointed out precisely this difference herself, together with the fact that the whole album was recorded live, which also reinforces such an effect.
There are other big tunes such as Sister, but Woman shines out with its simple feminist statement: “I dare to understand what makes me a woman”. On a song that is generally more concerned with relationships and life rather than politics, this is truly astonishing. These words resonate and can be more effective in song than many speeches on the subject – that is power of pop culture – as all will be singing out this lines together, man and woman, boy and girl. And on top of that, Angel Olsen’s usual melodramatic tone gives it almost epic proportions!
You can catch Olsen on her European tour right now – she will play Paradiso Noord in Amsterdam on Sunday before heading to the US. She’ll be back in the UK with a show at the Roundhouse in May 2017.
Photograph by Sabrina Rush