Angel Olsen, “The Tiniest Seed”

Ari Spool

Why wait? Just start right away asking the question. “Where is my harmony?” asks Angel Olsen the minute you press play. This song is about longing, and about the hardship of distance, and the double-entendré of the first line is almost the entire point – where is my partner? Where is my other half? Where is my yang? This song could be about romantic love, or it could be about the love of friendship, but it is certainly about missing a piece of oneself that takes the shape of another.

Angel has the perfect voice for this kind of song, a pitch-shifting, teary fullness that needs only the accompaniment of a brushed drum head, the occasional tap, and some low-lying chords. The message is in her voice, which originally blew our minds on her Bathetic debut last year, Strange Cacti. It quivers and quickens the pulse, and throbs throughout. And when a harmony does eventually join her, we don't feel relieved, because we are all sharing together her loss of harmony, which none can replace.

Halfway Home will be released on Bathetic September 4.

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