EDITOR'S NOTE: As 2018 comes to a close, we're looking back at some releases from the year that we didn't get a chance to write up when they were released. Cornelia Murr's Lake Tear of the Clouds was released in July.
The smoldering lullabies of Cornelia Murr’s Lake Tear of the Clouds cast a bewitching haze. The L.A.-based songstress strikes a smoky chord as she sings about the pain of losing a love and finds her voice on melodies that stay tucked away in your brain long after you hear them. Murr’s songwriting explores the dark side of femininity in a way that feels as enlightening as it is mysterious.
Lake Tear of the Clouds is Murr confronting the beauties and challenges of womanhood, both bodily and spiritually. Alongside sweet whistling on “You Got Me,” Murr struggles to maintain her sense of self as she falls in love in the midst of a bustling gathering. A pastoral acoustic guitar melody accompanies her as she sings: “I never drink the punch at anybody’s party / Me I’ll drink most anything … I don’t always choose to do right by my body / But I want the most what isn’t given freely / That’s how you got me.” She jumps into love without inhibition, throwing caution to the wind as she tries to keep both feet on the ground. It is that endless conflict of wanting to give so much of yourself but not wanting to lose any of it in the process, and Murr captures it stunningly.
That whistling comes in again on album opener “Different This Time,” a song about a defiant love. This enchanting sonic aesthetic is what elevatesthe songs on Lake Tear of the Clouds. It brings a sense of the unknown and a little magic to Murr’s quiet folk sensibility. Whether it be the subtle ringing of synth in “Tokyo Kyoto” or the hushed organ accents in “Cicada,” when combined with Murr’s hypnotic, angelic harmonies, these songs feel otherworldly and dreamy. Her soft vocals fall around you like a gentle fog, delicate even as her lyrics carry the heavy burden of not knowing which is to be trusted — the body or the mind.
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