Lucy Rose has changed and is sounding all the better for it.
Label: Communion Records
Released: 14th July 2017
After touring second album ‘Work It Out’, Lucy Rose was at a crossroads. That record marked a shift from the folksy acoustic of her debut to electric guitars and indie riffs familiar to anyone who knew her during her stint with Bombay Bicycle Club. Since then she has said goodbye to long-time bandmates and embarked on a DIY solo tour of South America, promising to play wherever fans can put her up.
This sense of openness and exploration permeates ‘Something’s Changing’, with a delicate harp intro providing a dais for Rose’s raw vocals. ‘Strangest of Ways’ shows Rose’s growth as a songwriter, fusing the spidery fretwork of ‘Work It Out’ and more reserved feel of her debut with a newfound confidence in her convictions.
There’s a freedom here that was missing from ‘Work It Out’; ‘Love Song’ features a sudden 40-second burst of colourful guitar work to close the track, while the sparse ‘Second Chance’ allows a soulful drumbeat to occupy centre stage.
The topics covered are more diverse, with the tender ‘Floral Dresses’ tackling Rose’s feelings on the societal expectations of young women and the strings-adorned ‘Is This Called Home’ is inspired by the ongoing refugee crisis in the Middle East.
By ninth track ‘No Good At All’ it’s clear that Rose is on a home run. These new songs carry a confidence and conviction that wasn’t as obvious earlier in her career. By paring back from a full-band setup each song is allowed to find its own place, and new instruments such as strings, harp and brass are given space to breathe and to define the songs alongside Rose’s unique voice.
Having finally come into her own and with a new live band ready to take these assured new songs out on the road, Lucy Rose has changed and is sounding all the better for it. Dillon Eastoe