Ellis: Born Again (Fat Possum) Review | Under The Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
Sunday, January 16th, 2022  

Born Again

Fat Possum

Apr 10, 2020 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share

Having put out one of 2018’s finest debuts in the shape of six-song EP The Fuzz, it was only a matter of time before multi-faceted singer, songwriter, and instrumentalist Ellis (aka Hamilton, Ontario’s Linnea Siggelkow) unleashed her anticipated first full-length album. That it’s taken a little longer than anticipated to do so only goes further to highlight its creator’s perfectionist tendencies, which of course can only be a good thing.

So, while that first collection of songs introduced Ellis as someone with a penchant for the (dream) poppier side of shoegaze and psychedelia, Born Again shows a whole different side to her artistic make up. Most notable is that rather than become pigeonholed in any one particular scene, sound, or genre, Ellis is as comfortable making uplifting pop and mournful ballads as she is shrouding her deities in high levels of reverb and distortion.

Veering from opulent daydreams such as the title track or elegant album midpoint “Fall Apart,” Born Again is a record steeped in ideas that surprise and surpass expectation with every passing number. Indeed, the most striking aspect about the 10 songs on this record are not only the way they flow seamlessly into one another, but also in that each and every one of them could be a single in its own right. Such is its creator’s distinguished panache for being able to fuse melody with a lyrical dexterity and subtle ambience yet still think and operate outside any confined box.

Where the personal nature in Ellis’ words come to the fore in songs like “March 13th” and “Embarrassing,” a more observational approach elevates the delightful “Into the Trees” and skyscraping “Saturn Return” into another stratosphere altogether. Before closing lament “Zhuangzi’s Dream” brings the album to an introspectively soothing finale.

Covering seemingly every emotion across its 10 pieces, Born Again is a record for doubters and dreamers. Born Again is for the lovelorn and bygone, yet through its range of emotive resonance comes a sense of fulfillment and joy. A rebirth, as its title suggests. (www.ellis-songs.com)

Author rating: 8/10

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Average reader rating: 9/10


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