One of the most impressive album releases I've heard during the past year comes from Denver-based alternative/darkwave musician Allison Lorenzen. Tender is Allison's mesmerizing and enchanting debut album that features gorgeous layers of moody and ethereal choral arrangements floating atop synthesizers and heavy guitar riffs with a brooding, edgy production.
Formerly one half the Darkwave band School Dance, Allison's solo work explores a minimalist approach to acutely felt noise-pop and aching slowcore. My first notice of Allison's music was her haunting remix of a track called "May3e" from indie/shoegaze band Fauvely. From there, my ears found and fell in love with "Vale," her minimalist, magical collaboration with Madeline Johnston (Midwife).
For those who look for musical comparisons, I'll venture to state that Allison's sound is unique, refreshing, and like nothing I've heard. The closest analogy I'll offer is Fever Ray meets Enya in the mist of a cool Autumn evening. Tender is magical and sonically uplifting, with Allison's signature haunting sound creating the sensation of weightlessness and out-of-body release within the listener. While the entire album is outstanding, my favorite tracks are "Chalk (feat. Midwife)," "Vale (feat. Midwife)," and "Backwards."
For a bit of visual accompaniment, we leave you with the official music video for "Chalk," directed by Jack Manzi and produced by Silver Island Studios.