Alternative | Indie Rock | Indie Pop
I first came across the project of Norwegian singer-songwriter Marie Ulven, known as girl in red, in the later part of last year, shortly after the release of her single “Rue”. Admittedly, I ended up knowing about girl in red, thanks to a friend of mine, but I digress. I just really loved the instantaneous sense of engagement I felt with that single, and I think that was likely down to its highly accessible, yet also very authentic vibe.
Fast-forward to 2021, and the idea that this year would see the release of girl in red’s debut studio album, made me pretty thrilled to have gotten into her music a little bit beforehand. The last week of April, which I am covering completely in may, managed to arrive with a shed-load of awesome new music. However, the sheer workload still wasn’t going to put me off giving this album a thorough enough listen. It was clear to me, that this album was certainly worth a shot.
Titled if i could make it go quiet, this debut album rounds up two of the teaser tracks released in 2020, along with the two released this year. Somehow, I only managed to discover one for each year prior to this album, in the form of the aforementioned “Rue” and “You Stupid Bitch”. Judging by these two teasers, I mainly got the impression of there being a festival-ready indie rock throughout. However, while there is indeed plenty of this to be found on if i could make it go quiet, that’s far from all the album offers.
By integrating a generous dose of electro-pop influence into the mix as well, I feel that the tracks found on if i could make it go quiet, do a brilliant job at expressing the duality of feeling one might feel when being so love-sick.
This brings us to what I felt to be the biggest focal point of the album; girl in red adresses the idea of being in an out of love so beautifully on this album. I’m aware that this is quite a commonplace concept for an album, especially in the realm of indie pop. However, there’s just something about the way that girl in red delivers that aspect, that makes the album such a compelling listen. As well as this, it perfectly fits in with girl in red’s previous material, that for the most part, focuses on queer romance and mental health. This certainly feels apparent on this project.
if i could make it go quiet was the kind of album that I truly felt, which is mostly thanks to the many moods the album provides. Some are warm and energetic, while others have a colder and more slow-burning vibe. But what ties them all together, is that the vast majority sound absolutely gorgeous, both with the vibrant melodies, and Ulven’s own beautiful vocal performances.
I still see myself as someone who is relatively new in the world of girl in red. However, I truly found little reason to really fault this album, despite how much I wanted to refrain from giving in to that initial wave of hype. While the closing instrumental track felt a little out of place, every other track on this thing was at least enjoyable. However, the very best that this album has to offer, will likely grow on me incredibly swiftly, especially with the prospect of summer on the horizon.
girl in red is definitely one to watch out for in 2021, thanks to this marvellous album to call her debut.
Favourite Tracks: Body And Mind | Rue | I’ll Call You Mine
Least Favourite Track: it would feel like this
world in red | AWAL Recordings
Enjoyment: 8/10 | Memorability: 8/10 | Atmosphere: 8/10
Uniqueness: 7/10 | Satisfaction: 10/10 | Narrative: 8/10