Album Review

Clairo - Charm

The intricacies of ‘Charm’ demand to be intimately known.

Clairo - Charm

Three albums in, Clairo is still showing how she’s a master at distilling a specific feeling into song. ‘Charm’ is the musical equivalent of a warm July evening spent with close friends, the group growing ever more confessional as the night passes. She captures the warm breeze, the fading light, the soft music that soundtracks the flowing drinks and laughter. Reaching for more live instrumentals, ‘Charm’ is humming with life. ‘Nomad’ gently stirs the album into being, spatial and lived in as it casts a dreamlike haze over the album. It’s both thought provoking and bringing with it a sense of unwinding and loosening. Even when there is frustration, it is relayed with the intimacy of a friend and thus ushers in another level of ease. ‘Add Up My Love’ gorgeously plays with a myriad of different sounds to create its breezy tone. ‘Echo’ evokes the heat of summer in its delicious guitar riff, shades of psychedelia making for one of the album’s strongest tracks. ‘Pier 4’ is earnest and still, drawing the album to a conclusion that feels borderline meditative. 

Clairo shifts deftly between her various influences but is unfailingly cohesive – her inimitably soft, airy vocals are the invisible string between each deviation. ‘Charm’ is a labyrinthine release, nestled with quirks that are buried deep: echoes of laughter on ‘Second Nature’; a gorgeous flute section that closes ‘Thank You’; the warm, almost western synths that emerge in ‘Echo’. It begs to be listened to again and again, and to soundtrack warm nights spent ruminating or engaged in the kind of conversations that can only come late in the night. The intricacies of ‘Charm’ demand to be intimately known. 

Tags: Clairo, Reviews, Album Reviews

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