Independent Spotlight is a continuing series on Stewart’s blog. The series revolves around independent artists and bands sending their music to Brett to review. No band is promised a positive review, and all music is reviewed honestly in an effort to better independent music.
In this evening’s edition of the Independent Spotlight, we shine our gaze on a singer songwriter who’s currently residing in Vancouver, Tanya Gallagher. Her latest studio endeavor, an EP entitled ‘Virginia,’ is due out September 30. (It’s currently available to pre-order on both iTunes and BandCamp.) Ahead of the release, however, Gallagher has debuted the title track and single for the album. Thus, is ‘Virginia’ worth your time? Let’s dig into the song and find out.
I’ve said this before, but it does bear repeating. I get a whole lot of indie acoustic singer songwriters across my desk - dozens a week. It’s become a bit of a trope, in truth, and as such, I hold every piece to a particularly high bar. If you want to enter the space of this scene, you have to offer something that’s not only authentic, but fresh and compelling. Surprisingly, Gallagher has done that.
‘Virginia,’ the song, started off as a recording that Gallagher created on her iPhone several years ago while visiting her parents in the United States. (She’s originally from Florida, but a whole slew of events lead to her ending up in Canada.) While she hasn’t explicitly stated it in the liner notes, I’m fairly certain the base of the single is that old iPhone recording. Her and her co-producer and engineer, Brandon Hoffman, just built a sonic landscape on top of it.
While unconventional, this works in Gallagher’s favor. There’s a magic to that original recording; her soft croons and lo-fi quality are endearing to the track. If it wasn't broken, why attempt to fix it? It holds such emotion. Once the layers of harmonies arise, the listener is presented with a jawdroppingly beautiful dichotomy between the studio work and the original sketch. This, of course, accents Gallagher’s stunning lyricism. This is indie singer songwriting at its finest.
If the passion of ‘Virginia’ is at all indicative of the six other songs on the album, ‘Virginia,’ the full EP, is very, very much worth grabbing when it appears on September 30. I should also note that tracks 3-7 on the EP are live, one-take cuts from three years ago. I’m completely intrigued to hear those in contrast to ‘Virginia’ and the other more recent song, ‘Southern Soul.’
Follow Tanya Gallagher below.
Official Website: http://tanyagallagher.com/