Country-fuelled singer-song writer Courtney Marie Andrews follows up 2018’s, ‘May Your Kindness Remain’, with her latest release, ‘Old Flowers’. A truly emotive and moving album brimming with honesty and vulnerability.
Opening up the album is, ‘Burlap String’, a slow and tender cut that explores Andrews’ feelings of nostalgia and melancholia. The line, “if I could go back now, I’d pick you wild flowers” standing out in particular, due to its undeniably wistful sensibilities. This idea is continued into, “If I Told You”, with the track seeming much more urgent and with a clear sense of desperation. Melodically, the boasts a great folk sound, a clear demonstration of Andrews’ skill in crafting meaningful country and folk with a pop sensibility.
‘Together Alone’, drives itself through the use of piano rather than guitar, creating a more brooding sense of intimacy. The track tackles Andrews’ acceptance and attempts at moving past heartbreak. The line, “I hope one day we’ll be laughing, together or alone”, showcases this and in-particular her acceptance in rejection. This combined with the beautiful melodies creates an odd juxtaposition of moods but manages to remain feeling authentic. The titular, ‘Old Flowers’ highlights the darker side of acceptance and the personal pain it inflicts. The almost palpable emotion in Andrews’ delivery of, “I can dream on my own” is wonderfully heart-breaking.
As the album reaches its later half Andrews’ country leanings come to prominence, in-particular in, ‘It Must Be Someone Else’s Fault’. Sounding like a modern day Dolly Parton, the melody is bouncy and lively, this being at odds with the downbeat and introspective lyrical themes. Closing out the album is, ‘Ships In The Night’ and with this the album comes full circle. Here Andrews’ seems to have accepted her situation, her change and her growing. As Andrews’ voice fades away, the album closes with a sense of, if not peace, hope.