Putting some distance between her previous electronic collaborations and her new solo career, VAR – otherwise known as Vanessa Anne Redd – has assembled what can easily stand amongst the best singer-songwriter albums of the year. Her ‘Behind the Wall’ is “a simple grunge-folk affair” in her own words, but there’s definitely more to it than that, despite the cute, handmade packaging. With bits of Angel Olsen and P.J. Harvey glimmering here and there, the British-German musician has created a brand new contemporary folk, sounding its best in piano ballads, like ‘Road that Drives Us’, and in a more guitar driven songs, such as ‘Twilight’.
There is brass in ‘Proof’, and strings in the title track, reminiscent of some Lennon-McCartney grandeur. ‘Beast’ is then a great folk downtempo track, just as ‘Escape’ reverberates an electric Tarantino mood. Redd’s voice is flawless when it hits the higher notes and almost as good in a deep murmur. Ten tracks to perfectly suit a bonfire in the woods (in an un-right-on way), an empty room for one, and in a Nashville club.
New monthly memberships available
Here’s a new thing: our membership scheme now has a pay-monthly option, plus a load of exciting new digital stuff for people who support what we do. It’s actually excellent value, honest, and will help us continue to promote new independent artists and labels.
Sign up and you’ll receive our physical magazines delivered to your door, our digital editions, exclusive podcasts and playlists and access to our EXTREMELY glamorous Members Lounge. You’ll be the envy of all your friends.