Posts Tagged ‘Lindsay Jordan’

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For Lindsay Jordan, this “record” would be the songs she wrote at fifteen that lend themselves to 2016’s Habither breakthrough EP. Written and recorded in her childhood home in the suburbs of Baltimore, its songs—introspective, sonic documentations of that overwhelming period of change when you sit on the cusp of adulthood—reminded audiences of the infinite, complex emotions adolescent kids experience. Coupled with her prodigious guitar talent and deadpan delivery, Habit unexpectedly made Jordan an indie darling who often evoked critical comparisons to her hero Liz Phair.

With the release of her first full-length, Lush, Jordan takes her music a step forward. In the two years since Habit, she’s come out as gay, graduated high school, and signed to Matador RecordsLush reflects both the realizations and the confusions that come with growing up, deftly straddling the line between youthful vulnerability and adult self-assuredness.

If her emotional candor makes her appear far older than she is (before interviews, she sends a list of frequently asked questions to avoid, like the tired “What’s it like being a woman in a band?”), as soon as she speaks, Jordan reminds you that she’s just nineteen years old. Excitement courses through her rapid, breathless, “like”-peppered sentences. She’s still figuring this all out, a little overwhelmed at the attention she’s received so quickly. If Lush is any indication, though, she’s heading in the right direction. Jordan spoke with us about artistic growth, vulnerability, and both the difficulty and importance of keeping in touch with the person she used to be.

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Snail Mail: <i>Lush</i> Review

“Lush” is a collection of 10 lucid guitar-pop songs that show off Lindsey Jordan’s classically-trained guitar skills, structural know-how, plus an ability to express the inquisitiveness and confident insecurity of youth with a surprising sophistication. “They don’t love you, do they?” she asks during the magic-hour-esque “Intro,” her clear and comfortingly vocal singing the first of many questions she poses throughout the album.

Envision for a moment, if you wrote and recorded some music in your teen years. Lindsey Jordan makes as Snail Mail is so very special. Her 2016 EP Habit won over critics and fans alike with its subdued power and studied melancholy, revealing well beyond her 16 years. Since then, Jordan has graduated high school, toured with the likes of Waxahatchee and Girlpool .

On “Pristine,” she seems to be speaking to someone else. “Don’t you like me for me?,” she asks, eliciting the pangs of your high school crush over low-burning, muted guitars with a ‘90s lean. “Stick” is filled with questions that could be for herself as much as they’re for someone else. “And did things work out for you? / Are you still not sure what that means?,” she sings—an arresting inquiry matched only by the skillful build of the music behind it. It swells and recedes beautifully in a way that when she finally lets the wave crash, the force nearly knocks you over.

Jordan’s music is laid-back, gently hooky, and complements the poetic vagueness of her lyrics. There isn’t enough detail for you to know exactly what she’s talking about, but you understand the mood. “Deep Sea” utilizes a song-length diving metaphor, with Jordan artfully using references to the bends, tides, and the blues and greens of the ocean as stand ins for loneliness, uncertainty, and a person’s responsibility for themselves—the french horn and Jordan’s soft strums driving the point home. “Full Control” hits you in the gut, her inner-conflict expressed in lyrics like “Shouldn’t be here when you get back / Just to stand in line / Wait for you and then waste my time,” as well as the gutsy chorus that features some of Jordan’s heartiest singing.

Though the highs and lows of the album are subtle, Lush confirms what the Habit EP first introduced. Jordan is a definite talent. The songs illustrate a wise-beyond-years songwriting style, with none of the self-importance and indulgence that can come with more experience. Nothing feels trite or contrived. She’s a natural, with an impressive sense of restraint, placing points of tension and release right where they need to be.

Snail Mail

I keep telling everyone check out Snail Mail, along a few others, She will shape the future of the best indie/alt rock to come, and every song they release becomes further proof of this. Lush will be a little gem of a record.

Last month, Snail Mail announced their debut album, Lush, with the track “Pristine,” which became one of the best songs of the week back when it came out. Today, Lindsey Jordan is sharing the LP’s second single, “Heat Wave,” and it’s sticky and humid, much like the unbearable situation that Jordan finds herself wrapped up in.

“Heat wave, nothing to do/ Woke up in my clothes having dreamt of you,” she sings in the first verse, trying to move on from a love that didn’t want to commit long-term. Part of it is genuine remorse at the loss of a relationship, but it’s also partially the boredom that comes with a day where it’s too hot to do anything, when you let your imagination run wild.

Her feelings on the relationship shimmer and shift, caught up in the exhaust of a sweaty summer day stuck inside. Jordan plays the part of bitterly defiant, and she gets her licks in with style: “I hope the love that you find/ Swallows you whole-ly/ Like you said it might,” goes one of the best lines, wishing the same wrenching fate upon whoever the former partner picks up next. For Jordan’s part, she’s ready to find something a little more reliable: “I’m feeling low/ I’m not into sometimes.”

The song comes attached to an excellent video, which was directed by Brandon Herman and finds Jordan revisiting the (not too long ago) time when she played on her high school’s men’s ice hockey team. She starts off by just playing simple air hockey though, sullen and alone, before getting sucked through the board, where she has to fend off a team of men, getting bloodied and battered throughout. It’s the Mighty Ducks continuation you didn’t know you needed.

From Snail Mail’s debut album ‘Lush’ out June 8th on Matador Records.

Snail Mail is the lo-fi bedroom pop project of singer-songwriter Lindsey Jordan. She’s a thoughtful lyricist who tends to buck the ‘woe is me’ cliche in favor of a wider, balanced perspective focused on forward motion. This refreshing view is shared over dreary textures, slow moving guitar work and Jordan’s effortlessly melodic vocal presence.

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Band Members
Lindsey Jordan – Guitar and Vocals
Alex Bass – Bass
Ray Brown – Drums