Heather Woods Broderick has been on our “Most Anticipated Records Of The Year” list for the last two years. Finally, on Friday, Broderick released the long awaited, Glider, the follow-up to Her 2009 record, From The Ground. In the six years between the two records, Broderick has created a name for herself as one of the finest touring musicians, collaborating and performing with Efterklang, Alela Diane, Laura Gibson, and Sharon Van Etten as well as her brother, Peter Broderick. Anyone who has seen Broderick perform with one of these bands can attest to her incredible presence, talent, and voice.
Glider is a truly beautiful record, and one of the finest of the year so far. From the first track, “Up in the Pine”, the listener is greeted by dreamy instrumentals, and the equally dreamy semi-whispered vocals of Broderick. The next track, “Mama Shelter” is another stunner, with amazing harmonies, and a really unique feel to it. “Fall Hard” and “The Sentiments” feature Broderick singing mostly just over piano and strings, making her voice feel quite fragile.
One of the early singles Heather Woods Broderick released for Glider was the track “Wyoming”, which is a stunning, dreamy build that creates one of the heaviest feeling tracks on the record. Broderick keeps things interesting with “A Call For Distance”, which opens up with almost a minute of just synth strings before going into a jazzy drumbeat and bass groove, but it’s not a jazz track at all, it’s an ethereal experience with chilling harmonies and an electronic backbone.
Glider comes to a close with three beautiful tracks. The gorgeous, devastating “Desert”, which is mostly just Broderick singing over guitar, backed by a perfect amount of harmonies. The title track, “Glider” is another track of mostly Broderick and piano, with a beautiful ending. The last track, “All for a Love” is a perfect end to Glider, it almost has a bit of a R&B feeling to it, with its drumbeat, guitar, and occasional horns, but it’s not like something you’d hear on a Leon Bridges record, with Broderick singing “I can see our love is dragging you down” as the track hits into one of the few guitar solos on the record.
Some things are well worth the wait. Heather Woods Broderick’s Glider is definitely one of those things, it’s a stunning collection of songs that manage to encompass a large range of genres, but never seems to stray too far from where it started. There’s definite dream pop and shoegaze influence, R&B influence, and folk influence, and Broderick brought them together quite nicely. And while, the pace is slow and the mood is haunting and dark, Glider is a captivating record, and that speaks to Broderick’s ability to create a feeling in a way that very few songwriters or musicians can.
Featured Photo by Dusdin Condren.
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