Raised in the pastoral hills of Virginia, Lael Neale takes musical inspiration both from the solitude of idyllic pastures and the energy of Los Angeles, where she currently resides. On her upcoming debut album, Neale navigates through her own winding search for essence and meaning, detailing experiences we all can recognize in our own lives. Though her voice warbles with vulnerability, her delivery is stoic – sometimes irreverent – and her melancholy verses are laced with subtle humor.
Produced by Marlon Rabenreither (Gold Star), I’ll Be Your Man’s gorgeous, hazy sound recalls the classic female singer-songwriters of 1960s and 70s. Over soft, country-tinged folk melodies, Neale catalogues despair as she walks listeners through the search for her own essence, declaring in “Because It’s Broken Me” that “I make love to break love, because it’s broken me” and offering, in “Sleep to Remember,” that “I sleep to remember who I was trying to forget.” Neale’s songs tell stories of romances experienced in arms-length relationships – romances sought not to cause self-imposed pain, but to experience the depth of the feeling itself through heartache used as a means towards understanding her own vital force. Nowhere is this more felt than on the LP’s first single, “Born in the Summer,” an ode to the challenges and joys of youth that blends remembrances of adolescent self-consciousness with the uplifting promise of possibility.
“Lael’s crystalline voice… confirms her as the songstress who will save us from darkness.”
“A hazy mix of psychedelia, lo-fi production, and folk with just the right amount of edge… there’s a vulnerability to Neale’s voice that sucks us in to the dark side without us even knowing it.”
RIYL: Angel Olsen, Nico, Sharon Van Etten, Dusty Springfield, Ryan Adams, Jessica Lea Mayfield, Natalie Prass, Jenny Lewis, Brandi Carlile
Recommended Tracks: Track 8, “Born in the Summer,” Track 1, “White Daisy, Lace Gloves,” Track 4, “Indian Summer,” Track 7, “To Be Sad,” Track 9, “Black & White,” Track 11, “Because It’s Broken Me”
Going for Adds 7/27 & 7/28
Label: Liberal Arts