There are few albums that compel, intrigue and confuse your senses in such a way as Laurel Halo’s ‘Quarantine’ does. For an artist with such a dizzying level of variation in their output, it’s probably somewhat expected that her debut album would reach such unpredictable levels. The most striking piece of note on the record is the commanding force that Halo’s vocals take. With varying degrees of presence, her voice quivers with intrigue and candid fragility; it arrives almost completely unembellished, and with it, manages to achieve such warped states of reality. ‘Years’ jars on the senses with Halo’s warbling vocals lingering for just that moment too long than what is usually considered appropriate.
There’s a distinct play-off between the classic intimate interchange of pleasure confounded by pain in the record. Initial tomes arrive moulded from constantly shifting melodies, jostling machine interfaces and Halo’s unadorned voice, creating a disorientating vortex of sound. The dissonance pervades with subtle modular tweaks pusher abstract ear constantly forward. There’s a sense of urgency that begs the listener to leave behind their preconceived notions of reality and to enter her world of misguided drama.
It’s an unfalteringly unique artistic vision at play, one that beguiles in the most perplexing of ways – one need only look at the inspired choice of cover artwork to field a truer insight into Laurel’s Halo warped and brilliant imagination.