Artist: Liz Longley
Label: Sugar Hill Records
Release Date: 08/26/2016
Deeply introspective, almost to the point of self-obsession, singer-songwriter Liz Longley develops therapeutic folk/pop-rock musings that have all the candid intimacy of diary entries on her sophomore effort Weightless. Her relationship issues are entirely relatable. The initial excitement of new romance, the longing for true connection and the eventual fading of love’s warm glow recounted in soul-baring lyrics and stories that get to the heart of the matter with poetic intelligence and grace.
It’s not surprising then that Longley’s songs have added emotional resonance to TV shows like “Army Wives,” among others. In fact, the yearning “Rescue My Heart” – starkly re-recorded for Weightless with melancholy piano – tugged at heartstrings in ABC’s “Switched at Birth” and MTV’s “Scream: The TV Series.” Although some of the material on Weightless has generic “adult contemporary” written all over it and at times is as melodramatic as a drawn-out B-movie death scene, moments of subtle charm appear as breaks in the clouds.
The slight twang and tender hooks of “Say Anything You Want” burnish a golden melody, while the shimmering choruses of “Only Love This Time Around” swell with hope and defiance. Betraying a more fragile constitution, “Never Really Mine” is lovely and the soft, desert-like “Oxygen” has a moon-lit atmosphere and an undercurrent of menace. But, “What’s The Matter” and “You Haunt Me” rock and swing with maturity and confidence, however gently. Those pure, warbling vocals of hers are seductive, too. It’s easy to fall under Longley’s spell.
– Peter Lindblad