Tirzah | Devotion | Domino Recording Co.
Release Date: 10 August 2018
Image Credit: Clare Shilland
Written by Jenna Dreisenstock
The gossamer dust mote of summer shining white curtains; lovingly stitched dresses, nostalgia in reflection and tender melancholia. Dynamic in nature and flowing as a lucid dream, introspective tenderness in auditory sculpture.
English songstress Tirzah allows us intimate insight into the raw personality of her sound in her debut album Devotion – her velveteen voice singing lyrical through a wonderfully painful soundscape. Formed as a project with longtime collaborator Michachu, Devotion allows a soulful dive into the unique dynamics of Tirzah’s auditory journey.
Opening in the submerge of soaked, shimmering charms, ‘Fine Again’ introduces the album’s 80s influence in the quick drench of synth, before the velveteen folk of Tirzah’s vocals spin a gentle pirouette in intimacy; a swirling glitter of moths drawn to melodic light in the ambient soundscape. A tender vulnerability in sultry charm, Tirzah’s harmonious vocals rise and fall, a sweetness reminiscent of R&B love ballads as a loving progression into a dreamier tone with lyrics stitched like floral fabric.
Heart-beat see-saw swings into trip-hop progression as ‘Gladly’ opens in a strong percussive beat amongst and electronic twang in the mesmer of longing. The vocal line drinks honeyed from the driving textural clap in the melancholy-drenched lost romance, a hint of the 80’s influence present as a dotted sky beneath the harmonies and gently distorted embrace; declaration of love slipping in the glittering chimes and soft, anthemic harmonies and melodic electronics.
Opening in an energetic fuzz and animated beat, ‘Holding On’ presents itself as one of the most upbeat tracks of the album, Tirzah’s unique style of R&B stitching seamlessly with elements of lo-fi dream-pop. A percussive drive and simple melody follow the sun-drenched upbeat of Tirzah’s slightly distant vocals, citrus synth melodies as catchy hooks in a nostalgic summer and pop reverb swim.
Sparkling in a nostalgic synth-wave melody, the glimmering melodrama of 80’s pop charm greets us in ‘Basic Need’, the synths explorative in artistic curiosity. The harsher sounds of the synths slumber in turn for the trip-hop dream of Tirzah’s gossamer vocals, reminiscent of the likes of Little Dragon’s Yukimi Nagano. The simmering fireflies of a confident beat shine in minimalism, as an ambient soundscape is sculpted with sleepwalking harmonies, elements of which show glimmers of a vocal influence reminiscent of Elizabeth Fraser of Cocteau Twins with that quietly familiar 80’s feel; yet despite the similarities Tirzah’s voice remains her own.
The dynamic effortless-ness of Tirzah’s unique sound breaks through the dreamy haze as vivid rays of sunlight, melancholic yet embracingly uplifiting. ‘Devotion’ is an intimate embrace in sweet love ballads and a quiet sadness through her singer-songwriter warmth combined with electronic artificiality.
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