This week we are taking a look at folk artist Jessica Pratt’s newest release, Quiet Signs. As Pratt’s third album since her start in 2012, this album combines the warm acoustics from her first and second album into yet another soft soundscape of guitars and quiet pianos. The album itself feels like a daydream, as it takes the listener on a slow, poetic journey through the melancholy lyrics about lost love and the continuous internal struggle of loving someone who doesn’t love you back. Pratt’s sweet, soft vocals add an element of mystery to the already obscure lyrics, leaving the interpretation of the music up to the listener.
The album is comprised of nine songs, the first one being an instrumental piano piece played by Pratt’s lover, Matthew McDermott. It is sweetly mysterious, giving the illusion of a performer playing alone in a large, empty theater. Its ability to make the listener feel the musician’s emotions before even hearing a word make it a great opening to the album.
Rather than telling stories, the songs on this album capture moments, almost like a musical photograph. In the song, Aeroplane, Pratt sings about what it’s like to be up in the air, gazing from the aeroplane window into the city below. She paints a picture of the thoughts and colors that swirl around in memory in that one single moment and captures the feeling of wanting to stay in the clouds rather than having to face the harsh realities of what it means to live on the ground beautifully. Rather than singing about external experiences, Pratt’s lyrics seem to come directly from inside as she effortlessly gives words to some of her most complex feelings and emotions.
For anyone who is looking for an album that gets to the core of the human condition, this is a great album to listen to. Pratt has skillfully woven her thoughts into ribbons of sound and poetry, making for a listening experience that is sure to touch the soul.
Image retrieved from pitchfork.com.