It’s been two years since we’ve heard a new release from Amelia Curran. She must have cocooned herself away, because she has completely transformed her sound, herself; They Promised You Mercy, is Amelia reborn.
There is a new force behind her music that she has never before harnessed. There is also an orchestra worth of instruments, and beautiful, subtle harmonies laced throughout the entire album that compose a new sound behind her ever thoughtful lyrics.
While in the past Curran has expressed a somber, sensual medley of melodies and smokey, simplistic vocals, They Promised You Mercy offers a wider range of emotions and abilities, in a dramatic, upbeat, uplifting, and dynamic record that’s built layer by layer.
Stand out songs, in my handful of listens, would have to be “Somebody Somewhere,” “The Reverie,” and “I Am The Night.” (I know you can’t hear these for a few weeks, and I’m sorry.)
“Somebody Somewhere” is the opening track and really sets the mood for the entire album. It’s an optimistic, uptempo chorus of harmonies, with a sexy baseline that will have you tapping your feet. (It’s also home to the title line of the record: “Somebody somewhere/is missing you now/they promised you mercy/and they’ll find it somehow.”)
“The Reverie” makes me think of reading a poem, and then realizing it’s going to be your favorite poem. It’s been bouncing around in my head for days. With opening lyrics as simple as “Am I born /am I born …” to her haunting refrain, chanting “you’ve got/you’ve got it all/ you thought the war was over.” It’s a song to sink your teeth into, enveloping you in a comfortable submission, echoing her former work, but easing you into her new voice.
(I hope I’m leaving you in desperate suspense.)
Perhaps, Curran’s best known and most popular song to date is her scornful, and scorching ballad “The Mistress,” from her earlier album Hunter, Hunter. Well, she has written her own rival. “I Am The Night” is the song that will stay with you. Lines like “I am the queen of the closing bar,” and “I am the gravity that holds you down/ I am the jewel in the thorny crown,” illuminate her poetic resonance.
Okay, okay fine. Here’s a teaser, a taste:
Don’t be afraid to lose the Amelia you knew, because this is definitely an evolution. This is Amelia, fully formed.
Relax, you’ll just have to wait a few more weeks to get your hands on this record, it’s available November 4th. And, you can catch Curran live at Holy Heart Theatre for her release show on November 8th. Grab your tickets here.
The leaves might be turning, but lots of great new things are coming. Stay tuned. I predict more new tunes as fuel to fight the frost.