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AOTY 2018

Make Way for Love

Marlon Williams - Make Way for Love
Critic Score
Based on 12 reviews
2018 Ratings: #178 / 706
User Score
Based on 64 ratings
2018 Ratings: #156
February 16, 2018 / Release Date
LP / Format
Dead Oceans / Label
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Your Review


The result is a stunning work that will draw you back to repeated, if oft intense, listening.
Northern Transmissions
Through the dense fifties and sixties roots of many songs on Marlon Williams’ sophomore record you may be expecting a simple love record that harkens to an older time. Through the lyrics and subtle writing however, Williams crafts an album that shatters these ideals again and again to make you question what’s really worth hoping for.
A.V. Club

On his sophomore release, Make Way For Love, Williams’ penchant for shimmering, swooning arrangements is alive and well, but driven by a darker, more adventurous spirit that goes a long way toward maturing his sound.


The sophomore solo effort from the soulful New Zealand-based singer/songwriter, Make Way for Love dials back on the genre-hopping tendencies of Williams' 2015 debut in favor of a more streamlined -- though no less emotionally charged -- set of heavy-hearted retro-pop ruminations.


Whereas his debut self-titled album was a perfectly serviceable slice of alt-country, it wasn’t really distinctive enough to stand ahead of the pack. That’s all changed with Make Way For Love which, at times, contains some of the heartbreakingly beautiful songs you’ll hear all year.

It’s obvious where Marlon Williams’s influences lie but he expertly melds his roots with elements of chamber pop and ‘50s heartbreak amid a sea of textures. ‘Make Way For Love’ is nuanced, subtle and evocative.
American Songwriter
It’s a bold, eclectic and audacious approach to the bulging catalog of breakup ruminations; one that emerges from the crowded field and shows Marlon Williams’ talents are just beginning to blossom.
The Observer

Make Way for Love finds Williams unleashing his inner crooner.

Largely stepping away from the rootsier country, bluegrass and folk influences of his first LP and his award-winning work with Delaney Davidson, Williams explores several different sounds with a palette of cinematic strings, shuffling rhythms and wonderfully melancholic piano.
Under The Radar

Make Way for Love is the soundtrack to a longing gaze across a mostly empty, darkly lit bar in which two lonely strangers find someone to spend the night with. It's a meditation on love—and perhaps, at times, simply on companionship—that seems born to echo out the speakers of a convertible taken on a midnight drive.

This album of heartbreak is also one of arrival. Marlon Williams positions himself, here, as one among a number of important young songwriters pointing towards where country music can grow into the 21st century.
Drowned in Sound
Though the overall effect is sometimes lacking, there are enough encouraging signs to suggest that his future work could produce something truly special.
Doubtless there will be people out there who can’t get enough of Marlon Williams’s smooth vocals and defiantly retro arrangements, and to his credit, Williams comes off like he truly appreciates this music, not merely courting the anti-modern music crowd. But it takes something original and exciting to lift classic country soul out of potential pastiche, and “Make Way for Love” doesn’t cut it in my book. I’ll admit a strong bias against male vocals with a lot ... read more
Richard Hawley fans might like some of this.
Favorite Tracks:
What's Chasing You
Party Boy
Nobody Gets What They Want Anymore
Make Way for Love
I really enjoyed this album, father john misty fans should check this one out.
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#21/Gaffa (Sweden)
#34/Double J

Track List

  1. Come to Me
  2. What's Chasing You
  3. Beautiful Dress
  4. Party Boy
  5. Can I Call You
  6. Love Is a Terrible Thing
  7. I Know a Jeweller
  8. I Didn't Make a Plan
  9. The Fire of Love
  10. Nobody Gets What They Want Anymore
  11. Make Way for Love
Contributions By
thisisabtlgrnd, Novell_sx, bgod
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Added on: November 26, 2017