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Album Review: Laura Jane Grace – At War With The Silverfish

Album Review: Laura Jane Grace - At War With The Silverfish

Short and sweet tracks sharing nostalgic despair

Laura Jane Grace is an artist of many undeniably natural talents. In addition to her powerful writing for the punk band Against Me !, she wrote transexual in 2016, a memoir that captures her experience as a transgender musician. On September 22, she continues to share her talents in her latest EP, At war with the silverfish.

The seven-track EP is generally short and sweet – each song is about two minutes long – but it still has enough of a story of nostalgia and regret. This folk-punk EP opens with “Three of Hearts”, which features the narrator who feels worthless; with two broken hearts and one of gold, they fall in love with contempt and forgive desperately.

In “Lolo 13”, listeners begin to see the desire for a past romance. With a rapid stomp-like percussion behind the acoustic tale of “Looking for a Girl in the City,” this song provides the soundtrack for a coming-of-age adventure. Although aAll adventures must come to an end, and in “Long Dark Night”, these lovebirds remember their time together before saying goodbye. Yet the rhythm of ’80s synths and sodas behind Grace’s lo-fi vocals suggests more mischief than melancholy.

However, in the gentle “Electrostatic Sweep” sadness begins to set in. The distant, slowed-down voice of the artist plunges the listener into a nocturnal haze, and it seems years have passed as she longs to “” talk about what it was like when we were young. However, she continues to take care of the mundane parts of life, as evidenced by the struggles involved in the “Day Old Coffee” routine. In the shortest song on the EP, people see how memories of the past consume even quick, everyday tasks.

“Smug FuckFace” features the album’s most regrets: the disheartened narrator desperately misses what they had in the past but is even more worried that he’ll never find that feeling again. In what follows “Yesterday Pt. II,” however, she contradicts – or perhaps responds to – that desperation, claiming that the joy of the past feels like it’s just, well, yesterday.

This EP follows Grace’s debut album as a solo artist, Stay alive. Last June, she performed a song from this album, “Swimming Pool Song”, as part of Rolling stones “In my room” video series. In August, she was efficient with Brendan Kelly at Four Seasons Total Landscaping. Even last September, she launched Audible Series “Word + Music” with its story “Black Me Out”. Laura Jane Grace has an aptitude for sharing these deeply personal and always relatable stories, and At war with the silverfish finds the balance between heartbreaking and universal experiences.


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