REVIEW: Waxahatchee – “Air”


REVIEW: Waxahatchee – “Air”

by Chad Jewett

Waxahatchee’s 2013 LP Cerulean Salt was a warm, compelling thirty minutes of pop austerity. The album’s songs never got thicker than a pair of guitars and a rhythm section; occasionally, they achieved striking beauty with a lot less. “Air”, our first glimpse at Ivy Tripp — Katie Crutchfield’s third release under the Waxhatchee moniker – is a bit more densely appointed, and works in a subtly syncopated groove that feels especially new following the stomp-or-swing rhythms of Cerulean Salt. Besides the airy tangibility of past Waxahatchee records – which has always been seriously lovely in its own right – Crutchfield’s careful whittling of sound has meant that you could track each addition and subtraction like a scene in slow motion. The Alabama singer-songwriter makes art that’s simultaneously transparent and poignantly opaque. So one notices the added brushstrokes on “Air”: that wonderful falsetto-as-riff that dots the breaks; the subtly wider proportions of the song’s sonic space (in a press release Crutchfield noted the changed atmosphere of the new LP); that radiant mood-change of a chorus that quite literally adds a new dimension to the rugged economy of Cerulean Salt’s directness. What remains is Crutchfield’s sense of weighted detail (“I left you out like a carton of milk”) and her still-remarkable ability to say more with less.

Follow us on Twitter:
Like us on Facebook:
Follow us on Tumblr:

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on Google+Share on RedditShare on Tumblr

Half Cloth

Independent Music & Arts Criticism

2 Responses

  1. April 10, 2015

    […] Salt, the 2013 breakthrough for singer-songwriter Katie Crutchfield (aka Waxahatchee), only felt like a study in minimalism. As austere as the LP could be — and indeed the […]

  2. July 3, 2015

    […] introspection that much more poignant. Crutchfield and company are resolutely choosey in the extra layers added on to Waxahatchee’s pastoral minimalism, making for an album full of just the right touches […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *