Posts Tagged ‘I’ll Sing’

Hailing from Berks County, PA, Shannen Moser grew up steeped in folk and country music. Influenced by the historically rich area, stretching farmland, and local folkers, Shannen credits the area with giving her the tools to write the music she does today, influencing her self-taught guitar plucking style and confessional lyricism. She vividly recalls her first encounter with folk music in her dad’s old truck, playing “I’ll Be Here In The Morning” by Townes Van Zandt. Since then, her love for songwriting has continued to grow.

In 2014 Shannen moved to Philadelphia and began pursuing music more earnestly. Her debut LP “Oh, My Heart” was released in January of 2017, and reissued by Lame-O Records later that Spring. Mostly recorded in a barn in Earlville, NY, the record brought a more expansive sound to her small bedroom recordings, moving Moser forward sonically as an artist while preserving the sincerity of her earlier work and showcasing Moser’s folk and country influences.

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Shannen Moser’s intimate sophomore album “I’ll Sing” was released on September 7th on Lame-O Records. An evocative and vulnerable storyteller, Shannen Moser’s narrative style makes every song on I’ll Sing like a short story, pulling listeners into the details while tackling big topics like heartbreak, loss, and battles with mental health. Written over a tumultuous year, Moser shows a willingness throughout the album to bear her scars, utilizing vulnerability in a way that feels powerful.

I’ll Sing was produced by Eric Muth and Cameron Konner at the Grey Ferry Warehouse in Philadelphia. Muth, Konner, and cello player and longtime touring band member Julia Peters were Moser’s backing band on the record.

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Throughout I’ll Sing, Shannen Moser reveals a strong understanding of relationships – not only the influence they have on us but also the inner turmoil they create. “Haircut Song” is a deeply poignant, often haunting portrayal of the power this human connection has over us. Recalling a relationship, she presents us with a different kind of love song: You said I’m doomed to love you, and that’s the truth/It’s a sort of ***ed up way to say it, but I loved you too. As the song progresses, she lays bare her desperation when things go sour: A Broken heart will convince itself of many things/I will silence my own beating heart, that’s the sh*t you don’t want to hear/I would sell myself out for a lifetime of “I love you, love you, my dear”. The song is beautiful, sarcastic and heartbreaking all at once. It hits all the right receptors in the brain, leaving you wanting more; this is ok, because the rest of I’ll Sing delivers the goods.

Although Moser’s lyrics are her greatest asset – giving I’ll Sing an extra bite through witty storytelling – there’s no denying her skill as a musician. Effortlessly blending folk, blues and country, there’s a good deal of variety throughout her songwriting. Sometimes, we get nothing but the dialed-down plucking of a guitar, but “Hallelujah” busts out the banjos and enters borderline ho-down mode as it progresses. Whichever method she employs, all the songs are given an extra jolt of life by her soaring vocals and relatable themes of love and friendship. “One For Mama” is a real tear-jerker, with bluesy guitars and strings making way for the croon of Momma, I’m never too old for your love. And as she closes with the Americana-tinged title-track, she makes it apparent she plans on making the best of life – pressing on and “singing” even in its most vicious moments. It’s one hell of a way to conclude such a powerful album; the slower pace allows her voice to really capture the moment in perhaps her most alluring performance here. If any of the tracks could be called soulful, this is it. It’s only one piece of the gorgeous puzzle, though. In its entirety, I’ll Sing is overwhelmingly affective – one of those albums that connects with you on a personal level. There are other notable songwriters this year, but few of them, if any, have as much to say as Shannen Moser does on her gripping sophomore effort.

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released September 7th, 2018

Recorded by Cameron Konner & Eric Muth in Philadelphia. Vocals and guitars- Shannen Moser