Feature, News, Reviews

Heather Woods Broderick Shares New Single “Admiration” – Taken From New Album “Labyrinth” due out April 7th via Western Vinyl

February 27, 2023
Photo credit: Sophie Kuller


Shares new single “Admiration”
Album ‘Labyrinth’ due April 7th via Western Vinyl

Maine-born, Los Angeles-based artist Heather Woods Broderick is sharing her new single Admiration“, the third from her forthcoming new album Labyrinth, due out April 7th via Western Vinyl.

The lean, intimate, and meditative song was inspired by the simple beats and hooks of ‘90s hip hop, and is embedded with soft synths reminiscent of ‘89-era Phil Collins. Broderick wrote “Admiration” during a trip to her former home in coastal Oregon during the wildfires in 2020, while alone and in an area surrounded by heavy smoke on all sides. “I was scared and missing my partner, not knowing whether I should evacuate or which road I’d have the best chance to get out on,” Broderick explains. “Amidst my fear and feelings of helplessness amplifying the current state of the world, I was also remembering what I have to be grateful for – trying to use fear and uncertainty as a vehicle for hope.” 

Brooding elements sweep into constructing the darker, elusive ambiance. The mood alters the moment Broderick’s tender and touching vocal harmonies resonate amongst those crucial textures. The soundscape is formed by so few, but deeply immense textures and tones. When the chorus sweeps in the unity of those textures develop with force and sustains this more intensive flow. This twisting, tumultuous world showcases a truly compelling backdrop for the fragile harmonies to explore further.

Across Labyrinth, Broderick serves as our reflective host, subverting expectations of conventional songcraft with impressionistic language and quietly relentless explorations of the human experience that’s at once light and dark, more circular and less linear. “Many of us yearn for stillness and peace, as an escape from the movement all around us,” she explains when asked about the themes of the album. “Yet movement is perpetual, happening all the time on some level. It’s as wild as the wind, yet eternally predictable in its inevitability. It is linear in part, but infinite in its circuitry. Our lives just punctuate it.” The album is a collection of beautifully-sung tone poems that pulse with elements of trip hop, true-to-life songcraft, and occasional peaks of electro-pop grandeur. The songs are also among her most spare to date, reflecting a natural, conscious progression towards being more exposed in her music, with her honeyed vocals upfront and the songs’ essence immediate to listeners.

Broderick began crafting Labyrinth in March 2020, when most forms of movement were brought to a screeching halt. The Maine-born, Los Angeles-based songwriter — who, in addition to her work as a solo musician, built a life playing and touring with acts such as Sharon Van Etten, Beth Orton, Damien Jurado, and Efterklang — was suddenly forced off the road for the first time in her career. She used this disruption as an opportunity to pare down her creation process and construct the scaffolding for Labyrinth in her apartment. Employing only the most crucial tools at her disposal, Broderick found herself opening different artistic doors as she focused on sharpening her recording skills, capturing the majority of the album on her own before finishing the remainder with Goodwin.

For all of Broderick’s sage lyricism and vocal authority, Labyrinth never provides the listener with any easy answers. If the image of the labyrinth represents the enormity of modern life and the difficulty of navigating it, Heather Woods Broderick provides a guide to its endless kinetic wonders — of being present, aware, and connected despite its disconnects. She describes the texture of its walls, its indifferent rhythms, and the inherent poeticism of feeling lost amid the confusion and unexpected turns. At this point in our history, perhaps that’s all we need to keep moving.

Labyrinth tracklist:
1. As I Left
2. I Want To Go
3. Admiration
4. Crashing Against The Sun
5. Wandering
6. Wherever I Go
7. Tiny Receptors
8. Blood Run Through Me
9. Seemed A River
10. What Does Love Care


You Might Also Like

No Comments

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.