Briana Marela: Call It Love (Jagjaguwar) Review | Under the Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
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Briana Marela

Call It Love


Aug 03, 2017 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share

Briana Marela, who released her first record with Jagjaguar in 2015 (the haunting and beautiful All Around Us), imbues her second studio album under the same label, Call It Love, with the recognizable ambient, echoing style that made All Around Us so memorable. Especially for those who found a new voice to love in Marela two years ago, the album starts off strong. Ethereal and complex, “Be In Love” is as close as it gets to a signature song of the impressive young artist. Marela dedicates the following nine tracks to exploring the human experience, in particular lovefrom first sight to heartbreak.

Overall, the album is slightly more pop-driven than its predecessor (though in no way that betrays the unique sound, which sets Marela apart in record shops). The album is perhaps even more accessible to newcomers than All Around Us. Yet, for all its strengths, it somehow lacks the same je ne sais quoi that endowed All Around Us with such a lasting quality.

In writing about her latest work, Marela recognizes a slight shift of focus from sound engineeringa clear and undeniable strength of hers-to achieving a written fusion of her interests in ambient and poppy songs. Marela is a skilled songwriter, to be sure, but the album lacks the heft of her Jagjaguar debut. With the exception of “Be In Love,” few songs linger the way they almost all did on All Around Us. Even the eponymous track, “Call It Love,” takes more than a few listens to truly appreciate. Marela’s exploration and experimentation as an artist will be key in sustaining what is hopefully a long career for this talent. However, it yields a follow-up release slightly less impressive than its predecessor. (

Author rating: 6/10

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