Surely, as a musician, when you first sit down to write a song, one of your aims at least should be to create something new, something different, something that will engage with your listener. And whilst talented Chicago songwriter Julie Byrne has created something beautiful with this, a second EP that’s pretty much a first LP, something with a shred of originality she has not.

‘Wisdom Teeth Song’ is stripped and woozily acoustic. Byrne’s vocals distinctly channel those of Chan Marshall’s Cat Power, while on ‘Young Wife’ those ghostly vocals, shimmering and floaty, sound like they’re drifting over a misty marsh. You’d be delighted if you stumbled across Byrne at some low-key gig, and likely be transfixed by those coldly beautiful vocals, but on record it leaves you strangely unmoved, as you struggle to care for the meaning behind the words she sings. Late on, ‘Keep On Raging’ flows icily like a crystal river, but this is a record ultimately indistinguishable from the countless others cut from the same cloth over the last year.


More from