ALBUM REVIEW: Miranda Joan – Windborne

8/10

ALBUM REVIEW: Miranda Joan – Windborne

Canadian electro-pop/neo-soul singer-songwriter Miranda Joan just dropped her brand-new album, Windborne. Miranda explains, "Windborne means to be carried by the wind. In the process of making this record, I found myself carried to many corners of the world to build and rebuild homes, through love and heartbreak, to circle back to the beginning and find myself anew. These songs are a collection of stories from my life over the past few years, recorded in LA and produced by Julian' J3P0' Pollack, who has been an invaluable partner in the creation of this album, the music is a reflection of a core desire to find, follow and live in love. "

Originally from Montreal, Miranda grew up in Vancouver, and spent time recently in NYC, where she toured and performed at venues such as Guggenheim, Joe's Pub, The Town Hall and has been a headliner at elite NYC venues like Rockwood Music Hall, Rough Trade, and National Sawdust.

She has shared the stage and worked with high-profile artists such as Andy Grammar, Brandon Victor Dixon (Hamilton), Christopher Jackson (Hamilton), Surf Mesa, Lorde and Shawn Mendes. Encompassing nine tracks, entry points on Windborne include the album's opening track, "Catch On Fire," a soft, creamy soul song with jazz filaments running through it. The highlight of the tune is Miranda's lusciously evocative voice.

"Ruined" blends savours of pop, R&B, and soul into a plush song reminiscent of Sade, only more avant-garde. Listen to the bass runs on this track – teeming with vibrating inflexions and modulated nuances. At once seductive and sensual, "Girlfriend" features sparkling chimes riding a throbbing kick-drum while sultry vocals imbue the lyrics with femme fatale tones.

Talking about the song, Miranda shares, "'Girlfriend' is a rejection of the labels we use that often dictate our experiences and also define how we experience each other. What started as a recount of a personal experience evolved into a greater reflection on ownership versus partnership in a relationship. I haven't spoken much about it, but in short, I was in a place in my life where I valued my autonomy and was very clear about that, and the person I was hanging out with had a hard time understanding. I think they had not yet met a woman who wouldn't swoon over the opportunity to be in a relationship. I was not that person. And ultimately, I felt punished for living exactly how I said I would. And so, like all writers, I took my feelings and frustrations to the page and wrote about it. "Girlfriend" simply said that sometimes a date is just a date. And it's not just men who feel that way. Women do too."

A personal favourite, "Home," rolls out on low-slung electro-pop colours travelling on a thumping rhythm. Miranda's soft, delicious voice infuses the lyrics with delicious warmth and gentle timbres.

Miranda says of "Home," "This song has a very special place in my heart and to be back on the land where I first wrote it is a wonderfully unexpected full-circle moment. This song has been a *very* long time in the making and holds an incredibly special place in my heart. This year once again, I've found myself asking, 'Where will I find home, and where will it find me?' This year has been a tough one. For us all. In so many complex and nuanced ways. As we orbit the one-year mark, I know many of us (especially us live performers) are feeling the lethargy & thick cement we find our feet in. I hope this song can be a moment of peace, a salve for the soul, in this time where I think we could all use a bit of comfort. And I don't mean sitting in our sweats at home all day. I mean the kind of comfort that comes from connection, the lightning that makes us feel alive. The comfort that radiates in the magic of us being here at all. I send you all love."

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