A peaceful pop-folk collection
Azure Ray recently released their fifth album, Remedy. Childhood friends in Georgia Orenda Fink and Maria Taylor formed Azure Ray in 2001. Their albums explore pop, folk and light electronica music. Remedy has elements from all three of the genres but mainly explores their folk sound.
The album kicks off with “Swallowing Swords,” which is a sad, slow piano ballad. The lyrics are insightful and make the listener ponder the rhetorical questions that appear in almost every line. Still, it is somewhat difficult to understand the song’s message as a whole. After the last chorus, an instrumental continues the slow and depressing sound throughout the rest of the song.
In “Bad Dream,” one of the singles on the album, there is more upbeat accompaniment than that in “Swallowing Swords,” but the overall sound remains tranquil and relaxed. There is a guitar with effects that creates a dreamlike feeling that fits well with the song’s theme. They sing about being stuck in a bad dream and trying to differentiate between the good and bad that is happening in these dreams. While the story behind these lyrics is also somewhat confusing, the song is very relaxing and creates an easy escape for the listeners.
The third track on the album, “Phantom Lover,” continues the relaxing sound found on the first two tracks of the album. With mostly natural sounds in the accompaniment, they take on a folk style for the song. They use nature images, like the stars and the moon, contributing to the folk style and creating peaceful images. This song is similar to the other two as it is also a tranquil escape with a somewhat unclear message.
“Remedy,” the fifth and title track of the album, begins with a peaceful acoustic guitar and a sweet message. They sing about someone being their only “remedy” in a world full of mishaps and people that do not understand them. The song’s sweet message is matched with the peaceful accompaniment and tranquil melodies that float over the guitar. The instrumental that follows one of the choruses sounds similar to a lullaby and helps the song finish peacefully.
Track six, “Desert Waterfall,” has a sound that is between folk, indie and pop. An acoustic guitar is layered with bass and drums in the beginning and creates a mysterious sound. The lyrics are about life evolving as they grow older. The song is emotional as they sing about still having part of themselves stuck in the past while the other part is ready for the future.
“I Don’t Want to Want to,” the final track on the album, is another relaxing song but has more pop-like production. It begins with synthesizers and pianos mixed, creating a modern and intriguing sound. The lyrics are deep and ask many questions, similar to the first track on the album. The lyrics repeat questions beginning with the words, “could love.” They sing about not wanting to “give it up.” While the lyrics are somewhat confusing, the song is an emotional journey of not wanting to give up love and a relationship.
Overall, Remedy, Azure Ray’s most recent album, is a peaceful folk album that is easy to escape into.