Album Review: Golden Hour

The wait is over! The Golden Hour has finally arrived in the form of a brand new Kacey Musgraves album. This album really embodies who Musgraves has become as an artist, lyrically and musically and it does so with an authenticity and enchantment.

Most of the songs on this album have a different sound to anything we’ve heard from Musgraves before, yet the lyrics hold the same real life feel that we know and love. Different from the majority of the country genre, Musgraves is still echoing the sentiments of ‘Follow Your Arrow’ in songs, just less explicitly. She has been a part of the writing process for every song on the album, and has let fans know the meaning behind each song on her Instagram page. Each song also allows for the listener/fan to decide for themselves how they relate.

Perhaps needing a little less interpretation, is ‘Lonely Weekend’ which gives an insight into life as an artist married to another artist, though it’s not necessarily sad in tone, rather an “anthem” as Musgraves calls it, it all just feels very real and anti-cliché, much like the rest of the album.

Musgraves got married last year in a celebration of nature and love equal to that shown by this album and it is clear that with this came a maturity and alternative perspective on love and life. Standout tracks on the album, are ‘Love Is A Wild Thing’, ‘Slow Burn’, ‘Space Cowboy’. ‘Love Is A Wild Thing’ puts love amongst nature, as something that will happen even if you try to prevent it, optimistic and charming.  ‘Slow Burn’ has a dreamy melody suited to it’s name, meaning that it is amazing when performed live. It was described by Musgraves as one of her “most autobiographical songs”.

Given the mention of LSD helping the writing process of Golden Hour, you could be forgiven for thinking ‘Space Cowboy’ would be about some kind of out of this world cowboy, reminiscent of those mentioned by Jamiroquai or the 2000 Clint Eastwood film.  The song however, is much deeper and dare I say better, than both of those. It shares a story of the futility of trying to hold onto a man who doesn’t want to stay and does so while staying true to western roots.

Musgraves has said before that she only puts out music that she will always be proud of, Golden Hour being the perfect example. She is unafraid of going against the grain, releasing less traditional country music in sound, but pure country in lyrics. ‘High Horse’ errs on the side of dance/pop-country and does so in a non-cheesy way,  ‘Golden Hour’ has a psychedelic feel and ‘Slow Burn’ perhaps more similar to her previous music, at least in the chord structure that it follows. This album has to be a contender for any Album of the Year awards, country and all genre, it deserves to stand amongst the best.

Golden Hour was released March 30th. Catch Kacey Musgraves on tour in the UK in October.

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