Music

Folk Pop Singer-Songwriter Clara Strauch Shines on New Album, 'Persephone' (premiere)

Photo courtesy of Public Display PR

Clara Strauch's Persephone is a look back on the hints of light and darkness that together make up what it means to be human.

Clara Strauch's artistic journey began as uniformly as any other young folk's set on a dream might—couch-surfing. That time spent honing in on her craft between homes has done her well, though, and we are just now being able to see it all come full circle with the 25 May release of her debut LP, Persephone. Written and developed over the course of three years, Strauch's first collection of studio-recorded songs pursue soulful, wintry music reminiscent of the work of such powerful songwriters as Regina Spektor and Lucy Rose.

In many ways, the themes you will encounter on Persephone are reminiscent of the journey Strauch took to bring it to us. Tinkering with darker shades of evanescence and apprehension, Strauch wraps her warm voice around indelible folk melodies that weave heartbreaking tales of loss. With every cloud, though, there is indeed a silver lining, and Strauch insists on reminding us of this as the album reaches its crescendo. It's a full-bodied collection of gorgeous, meditative arrangements that take us on a slice of life's overall journey, painting moments of heartache that inevitably give way an enlivened, heartened place by our adventure's end.

Raw, vivid, orchestral, and emotional, Strauch's Persephone is a look back on the hints of light and darkness that, together, make up what it means to be human. It releases on 25 May.

Strauch tells PopMatters, "I chose the myth of Persephone as a title for this album after all the songs were already written, because it helped me finally make sense of it all. I had spent years stuck in a trancelike pattern of backing-and-forthing, both geographically and emotionally, that I really didn't have to stay in, because (to quote my own song) "Oh Persephone, it's so hard to see that it's only your beliefs that keep you beneath." So. This album is a story of shifting beliefs. It's loss, letting go, metamorphosis, breaking a pattern, a sort of pupation, dealing with the shit — the weeds — and what's underneath the surface. A journey from fear to love, darkness to light, winter to summer, and from feeling stuck to free."

Music


Books


Film


Recent
Music

Luke Cissell Creates Dreamy, Electronic Soundscapes on the Eclectic 'Nightside'

Nightside, the new album from composer and multi-instrumentalist Luke Cissell, is largely synthetic and electronic but contains a great deal of warmth and melody.

Music

Bibio Discusses 'Sleep on the Wing' and Why His Dreams Are of the Countryside

"I think even if I lived in the heart of Tokyo, I'd still make music that reminds people of the countryside because it's where my dreams often take me," says Bibio (aka Stephen Wilkinson) of his music and his new rustic EP.

Reading Pandemics

Pandemic, Hope, Defiance, and Protest in 'Romeo and Juliet'

Shakespeare's well known romantic tale Romeo and Juliet, written during a pandemic, has a surprisingly hopeful message about defiance and protest.

Film

A Family Visit Turns to Guerrilla Warfare in 'The Truth'

Catherine Deneuve plays an imperious but fading actress who can't stop being cruel to the people around her in Hirokazu Koreeda's secrets- and betrayal-packed melodrama, The Truth.

Music

The Top 20 Punk Protest Songs for July 4th

As punk music history verifies, American citizenry are not all shiny, happy people. These 20 songs reflect the other side of patriotism -- free speech brandished by the brave and uncouth.

Books

90 Years on 'Olivia' Remains a Classic of Lesbian Literature

It's good that we have our happy LGBTQ stories today, but it's also important to appreciate and understand the daunting depths of feeling that a love repressed can produce. In Dorothy Strachey's case, it produced the masterful Olivia.

Music

Indie Rocker Alpha Cat Presents 'Live at Vox Pop' (album stream)

A raw live set from Brooklyn in the summer of 2005 found Alpha Cat returning to the stage after personal tumult. Sales benefit organizations seeking to end discrimination toward those seeking help with mental health issues.

Love in the Time of Coronavirus

'Avengers: Endgame' Faces the Other Side of Loss

Whereas the heroes in Avengers: Endgame stew for five years, our pandemic grief has barely taken us to the after-credit sequence. Someone page Captain Marvel, please.

Music

Between the Grooves of Nirvana's 'Nevermind'

Our writers undertake a track-by-track analysis of the most celebrated album of the 1990s: Nirvana's Nevermind. From the surprise hit that brought grunge to the masses, to the hidden cacophonous noise-fest that may not even be on your copy of the record, it's all here.

Music

Deeper Graves Arrives via 'Open Roads' (album stream)

Chrome Waves, ex-Nachtmystium man Jeff Wilson offers up solo debut, Open Roads, featuring dark and remarkable sounds in tune with Sisters of Mercy and Bauhaus.

Featured: Top of Home Page

The 50 Best Albums of 2020 So Far

Even in the coronavirus-shortened record release schedule of 2020, the year has offered a mountainous feast of sublime music. The 50 best albums of 2020 so far are an eclectic and increasingly "woke" bunch.

Books

First Tragedy, Then Farce, Then What?

Riffing off Marx's riff on Hegel on history, art historian and critic Hal Foster contemplates political culture and cultural politics in the age of Donald Trump in What Comes After Farce?

Reviews
Collapse Expand Reviews

Features
Collapse Expand Features
PM Picks
Collapse Expand Pm Picks

© 1999-2020 PopMatters.com. All rights reserved.
PopMatters is wholly independent, women-owned and operated.