AOTY 2023
Welcome back everyone

I had a great time at Japanese academy and met a lot of new friends and learned quite a bit there too, but one thing I did miss was having nonstop access to so much music through my phone and streaming. I was, however, allowed to bring an iPod without an internet connection, and I decided to save several favorites of mine, including this album. Now I’ve been a huge fan of this album since I first listened back in March of this year. I remembered how much I’d heard good things about Weyes Blood, both from friends and from people on the site, but I was mildly skeptical. Then I listened, and was blown away by the first track. It just had such immaculate production, vocals, and songwriting, and this continued for literally every single song, and I immediately gave it a 100 after finishing it. After that I didn’t really revisit it all that often, but I certainly respected it a ton, but then at the academy with my shitty iPod, I was wondering what album I should listen to and decided on this one. Then I kept listening to it over and over and over and over, with me only falling in love more and more each time. On every listen everything just felt even more immaculate than before, particularly with me realizing how great the songwriting is (I loved it at first too but it grew even more). When I finally got my phone back a few days ago, I decided to change up my favorite albums and switch Titanic Rising from my #6 fav to my #5, just from how much it connected with me with all of those listens at the academy. I’ll now be doing a track by track rundown and explaining what I love so much about each track

The opening track, A Lot's Gonna Change, is maybe one of the greatest openers I’ve ever heard. It starts with this beautiful droney melody that almost sounds tragic, before transitioning into this beautiful simple piano that feels so perfectly timed and works perfectly in terms of emotionally and her vocals are so good in terms of that. Then these gorgeous strings come in and OH MY GOD they feel like they were made for her vocals, they are placed so beautifully in this song that they make every other part of the song feel much more emotionally powerful and just beautiful. Then there are just these moments where she uses reverb to make her vocals almost all consuming and they just completely blow me away. Then you have this amazing, comforting, almost motivating songwriting about facing the challenges and changes that come with your life, with or without help. It’s just makes me cry so often. Such a fucking phenomenal opener, and it really fucking let’s you know how good the rest of the album is gonna be

Next we have Andromeda and god is this track beautiful. The production is very much inspired by her older style of psychedelic folk, and it’s just fantastic and perfectly matches the almost ethereal quality of this song and its vocals. My good are the vocals amazing on this track. She really perfected an amazing, ethereal quality here and it fucking shows. She doesn’t really use it in a more powerful way like I mentioned on the first but it’s just beautiful. In terms of lyrics this one’s an interesting one, because it can be interpreted in multiple ways, one being about losing faith in god, the other being about losing faith in relationships. Whoever this song is addressing would determine what the song is about, but either way it’s just such a emotionally powerful track, and the lyrics just really resonate with me, even as someone who’s never really been in a romantic relationship before, just because of the potential dual meaning that can come from this track. I’m pretty sure Weyes Blood herself said she more wrote it about her faith in relationships, basing it off of the Greek myth of Andromeda, but I feel like some of the lyrics are also undeniably influenced by her loss of faith in god, particularly with her strict Christian upbringing she has mentioned several times. It’s just such a fucking beautiful, ethereal song, with more of her amazing lyrical ability

Next we have what I probably would call my least favorite song, Everday, but considering how much I love this album that basically means fucking nothing and I still consider this song to be pretty much flawless. The sound of this song is a lot more chamber pop and it sounds a lot brighter and happier than the rest of the songs. The drumming in this song is crazy fun, and all of the instruments plus the BABABABABABA on the chorus just make this such a euphoric song. Now lyrically, this may just seem like a standard love song about obsession, but in my opinion it goes deeper than that, particularly after seeing the music video. It’s actually very interesting, because it’s basically a story of Weyes Blood, her friends, and their boyfriends at a party and her eventually killing all of them. How this relates to the song as a whole? Well, I think it’s more meant to convey the absolute deranged attitudes of her obsession even more so. So yeah, I probably resonate with it the least emotionally out of all of the songs on here, but it’s literally such a fucking perfect euphoric sounding chamber pop song, and it’s lyrically a much more interesting song than one may think at first

Next there’s a personal favorite of mine, Something to Believe. Sonically it’s by no means the most grand, but it has such a great combination of all of the album’s different sounds with the piano, strings, and psychedelic folk sounds all present here. The most powerful moments vocally sound like a fantastic combination of her more ethereal side and her more powerful side. What really makes this song such a favorite for me though is the lyricism and fucking flawlessly executed instrumental and vocal tonality emotionally. The lyrics on this song just hit me so fucking hard
“And at night
I just lay down and cry
The waters don't really go by me
Give me something I can see
Something bigger and louder than the voices in me
Something to believe”
Like god fucking damn. It’s just a song that hits so fucking close to home for me, feeling like you’re merely watching the rest of the world go by without you, feeling meaningless, and yearning for something to just put all of your faith in to give you some semblance of meaning. And the instrumentals are so perfectly executed in portraying these emotions along with the vocals that this song just makes me cry so often. It’s just such a beautifully written and performed song

Next there’s the interlude and title track. Funny thing is I never got to listen to this interlude at the academy because the shitty website I used to pirate the music from got the actual music itself from the first thing it searched on YouTube so when you search “Weyes Blood Titanic Rising” you get a full video of the album so it just gave me like 16 minutes of the album (it couldn’t get songs more than like 17 minutes) Anyway, it’s such a lush, gorgeous track, that sounds as if you’re underwater, like the album cover (which is fucking amazing if I haven’t said so already in this review) there are these noises that sound as if they were made by sea creatures, and it’s just beautiful. It’s nothing crazy but it’s a perfect interlude leading into the next track…

Movies. Dear lord this song is fucking life changing shit. The first half consists of this absolutely gorgeous, transcendental instrumental mixed with incredible vocal prowess that simply makes you feel as if you’re ascending. The second half… IS LITERALLY THE BEST FUCKING THING I MIGHT HAVE HEARD IN MY ENTIRE LIFE HOOOOLY SHIT. These wild strings come and her vocal prowess somehow increases EVEN MORE and it just completely consumes me. The sheer amount of passion, beauty, and power in the second half just makes it one of the best things I’ve ever heard, easily. Lyrically this song is very interesting as it’s about this idea of desiring a simplistic, movie like story of a life. Rather than having to deal with the complexities that come with one’s life, this covers the desire to only face simplistic, movie like struggles. Even if I’ve never been a huge movies person myself, all too often do I just wish my life could resolve in a simplistic movie like way (Like I get free hormones and surgery, marry a hot guy, and epicly own every transphobe in a battle to the death where I win and then become a successful shoegaze band frontwoman) And even if that sounds a tad exaggerated, I do legitimately wish I had struggles like those rather than the often torturous and boring ones in my life, so I can really relate to these lyrics. Seriously a life changing song and the second half is simply unmatched in how amazing it is

Next is Mirror Forever. A very passionate yet also one of the lightest tracks on here instrumentally. It still feels quite grand, but very light. There’s a beautiful flute or something that really adds to this heavenly feel and her vocals really do too. There are also more heavy parts in the drums and guitars, but they never make it feel crazy or anything Lyrically it feels like it touches on this constant feeling of needing to be a martyr in everything and criticizes it (“No one's ever gonna give you a trophy for all the pain and the things you've been through
No one knows but you”) It additionally just tells you to sometimes focus on yourself, even in relationships with “Oh baby, take a look in the mirror”. Just another phenomenal track on an already perfect album

Next we have Wild Time. Here you can really hear her go full psychedelic folk production wise and it’s extremely nice, plus with some amazing strings (especially on the chorus) and touches of piano. Some people tend to like this track less because it’s the longest and not really the craziest like sonically, but I consistently captivates me the entire time and can get just the right amount of grand with the strings mixed with this great psychedelic folk, particularly on the chorus, and at the end. Lyrically it’s not the most complex but it mostly touches on something I think many can relate to, that is living and living in such an often desperate time. She points out the need to let what doesn’t kill you make you stronger, otherwise your struggles will have been for nothing, which while not the most original idea, is still a very good message that just hammers home how we can make it through this wild time. Just beautiful

Finally we have the last track before the instrumental closer (which I’ll get to) Picture Me Better. Jesus Christ is this track brutal when you know the context. It’s probably the most light instrumentally, with a simple acoustic guitar mixed with these relaxing strings that make an almost nostalgic sound for me, but they also sound the most down and sad for me, which just fits perfectly knowing the meaning. Her vocals are also similarly light, until you get to the chorus where you get those powerful, all consuming vocals again, which are just so moving. Lyrically, god is this song a sad ending. She wrote it about a dear friend of hers who committed suicide as she was making the album, and you can really hear just how much passion went into this subject. She really just wishes she could’ve done more for this person and shown them how much they’re beloved before they killed themself, and it’s just heartbreaking. Truly a phenomenally written and performed song with a lot of genuine passion and emotion behind it

Then we have the instrumental outro, Nearer to Thee, which is mostly just the same melody as A Lot's Gonna Change but this time entirely on strings and god. Somehow just hearing it briefly again but on strings can really make me remember all the emotions the album makes me feel every time I listen to it, truly a great, simple yet beautiful way to close a perfect album

I’ve grown so attached to this album, I don’t think there is any other score I could give besides a 100. A frequent criticism I see is that it’s just generic art pop/baroque pop pastiche, but in my opinion, while it obviously borrows elements from a lot of older art pop and baroque pop, it still totally stands out in terms of it, being such a uniquely beautiful and ethereal album, while not sacrificing a bit of power, passion, or emotion for this amazing ethereal quality. Another criticism I’ve seen is that the writing is just generic love shit, and while it may seem like that on a surface level, it goes so much deeper than that even on the songs talking about love, and it touches on so many different things lyrically. This album just is flawlessly produced and performed, and has the ability to make me feel all sorts of emotions. It’s easily grown to be an all time favorite of mine, and it’s just a perfect album. Thanks for reading, it took a bit to write this but I’m proud, the next long review I’ll be doing will be of Kenshi Yonezu’s Diorama so be on the lookout for that since I’m gonna make it even longer than it already is currently! So anyways, it took days to finally finish this, but this is my “I’m back review” and I hope you all enjoyed! BYE!

Irissssssssssss's Tags
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