Angel Olsen’s debut Half Way Home is more bare bones than her sophomore album and all the more haunting and touching.
“Acrobat” floats on a lightly bouncing guitar line and Olsen’s light voice before adding a touch of organ and her voice shifts into a haunting off-key slide that gives me chills with every listen. The standout track “The Waiting” bounces in a delightful old pop sound reminiscent of She & Him, but the lyrics ache of yearning. The lyrics “Someone to run not walk/someone to sing not talk” resonate with those weary of half-hearted love, and her line “Here I am all Alice in wonder” always makes me smirk.”
Lastly is the first song to give me chills in years, where many songs can get my head rocking or get me in a groove this gave me goosebumps. “Free” is a song brimming with happiness, feeling sweet and ready to burst at any moment. The song lets out signs of its joy throughout the song but the goosebump inducing moment comes at the end when Olsen lets out these shrill cries of joy saying “My MIIIIIIIIIIND” in the last 40 seconds of the song. The first time I got here I wasn’t sure if this was her singing with a theremin but when I had finally understood it was her perfectly on key cry my arms were already covered in goosebumps.