CLAIRO – ” Sling “

Posted: July 19, 2021 in MUSIC
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Clairo Sling

Sling”, is the second full-length from Clairo, was recorded at a moment when the young singer-songwriter was unsure if she wanted to continue pursuing music at all. Produced by Clairo and Jack Antonoff and recorded in a remote studio in upstate New York, the new LP takes sonic inspiration from those woodland surroundings. Across “Sling“, whose track “Blouse” features background vocals from Lorde, Clairo describes depression and being a young woman navigating the music industry.

When it was time to release a first single from Claire Cottrill’s hotly anticipated sophomore album under the name Clairo, somebody chose an interesting one: “Blouse” a downcast ballad about feeling sexualized and ignored that sounds like Phoebe Bridgers singing a Simon & Garfunkel song. The contrast between “Blouse” and Immunity provoked several questions: Was the single representative of the rest of the new album? Or would it turn out to be a curveball? Was it indicative of a change in direction for Clairo? Or was it just another one of her sad songs, this time stripped of the production touches of former Vampire Weekend studio wizard Rostam Batmanglij, whose influence is heavy throughout Immunity? A little more than a month later, Clairo’s new album “Sling” is here, and we have our answers.

Yes, “Blouse” is somewhat representative of the work as a whole, in that it is one of Cottrill’s sad songs—resolute, plainspoken, emotionally resonant, melodically inviting—and Batmanglij’s thumps and squiggles are nowhere to be found. In their place are string sections and horns, rubbery bass lines and warm organ tones, layered harmonies, hushed acoustic folk, modest indie-pop and ‘70s singer/songwriter vibes.

And in Rostam’s place is Jack Antonoff, super-producer to stars like Taylor Swift, Lana Del Rey, Lorde and The Chicks. Together, Antonoff and Cottrill recorded Sling at Allaire Studio on a verdant hilltop in upstate New York, where Cottrill found solace after a whirlwind few years that included Immunity’s success, lots of touring and, before all that, her viral rise. Which is probably why Sling sounds like a long exhale after a wild ride: constructive, much-needed, a little bit messy. And while setting Sling next to Immunity proves Cottrill has more than one pitch in her arsenal, it turns out her curveball is the one that’s most dazzling.

Here’s hoping she makes an album full of them someday. 

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