Laura Viers – Saltbreakers

25 09 2008

On Saltbreakers, singer/songwriter Laura Veirs’ 2007 Nonesuch Records release, she further hones her craft of creating catchy, melodic, and ethereal songs after her breakthrough album, Year Of Meteors. Much like the album’s cover, the songs on Saltbreakers move along like a leisurely midnight boat ride on a calm sea, but are far from boring. After hearing the first few tracks on the album it becomes apparent that she isn’t after super stardom nor is she chasing after indie street cred, but rather just an artist expressing herself as best she can.

Viers’ vocals may seem slightly despondent at first, but beneath the surface they’re bubbling with emotion. Furthermore, her penchant for lyrical imagery is astounding, taking the listener to a dream-like world of “Japanese fishing boats” and “Mermen.” With basic chords and memorable vocal melodies, the song structure itself is quite simple, leaving plenty of room for drummer/producer Tucker Martine to fill in the spaces with some of the finest and most tasteful production I’ve ever heard. Utilizing a diverse range of soundscapes, Martine has a natural gift for adding only the slightest of instrumentation to take the song to another plateau without overshadowing the original integrity of the work.

Saltbreakers, as well as her previous records, are staples of my record collection. Here are some links to get you started: iTunes, Laura Veirs’ site, Myspace, and Amazon.

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