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Heather Woods Broderick | Labyrinth (2023)

heather woods broderick labyrinth

The word labyrinth is often used interchangeably with the word maze. But unlike a maze – which has multiple branching paths – historians argue that the traditional labyrinth consists of a single path, one that’s been elaborately constructed to unfurl with all of the mystery and incomprehensible beauty of life. Using this definition, completing a labyrinth isn’t about choosing the right path, it’s about choosing to persist at all.
Across her new album Labyrinth, Heather Woods Broderick serves as our reflective host, subverting expectations of conventional songcraft with impressionistic language and quietly relentless explorations of the human experience that’s at once light and dark, more circular and less linear. “Many of us yearn for stillness and peace, as an escape from the movement all around us,” she explains when asked about the themes of the album. Western Vinyl

Heather Woods Broderick: Labyrinth

“Yet movement is perpetual, happening all the time on some level. It’s as wild as the wind, yet eternally predictable in its inevitability. It is linear in part, but infinite in its circuitry. Our lives just punctuate it.”
So perhaps it’s fitting that Labyrinth begins with an account of the artist on the road. “Driving west at night” she sings on the curtain-raiser “As I Left,” “Getting darker at the same time it’s getting light.” This vignette of Broderick escaping the approach of dawn sets the stage for the rest of the album, a collection of beautifully-sung tone poems that pulse with elements of trip hop, true-to-life songcraft, and occasional peaks of electro-pop grandeur. The songs are also among her most spare to date, reflecting a natural, conscious progression towards being more exposed in her music, with her honeyed vocals upfront and the songs’ essence immediate to listeners. Western Vinyl

Artistic, complex, poetic, and emotionally powerful, Broderick pulls out all the stops here. Everything, from those mesmerising vocals, her storytelling abilities, and her unique recording skills (she captured the majority of the album on her own), are all winning qualities. Additionally, her music transcends genre boundaries…this is sure to open a whole new fanbase to her music. folk radio

Heather Woods Broderick’s new album, Labyrinth, is something of a goodbye and hello. The opening track conveys her mood upon leaving her Oregon coast home, which had spawned her previous album, Invitation. That recording was part existential rumination and part communing with nature, but Broderick left that Oregon home for Los Angeles, where she crafted this album amidst pandemic, floods and fire.
The first song captures that final departure, the piano-led, “As I Left.” But that sound changes with the next track, “I Want to Go” with its fuzz-snarling guitar and drum loop. That palette-cleansing sound evolves into a prettier synth melody where Broderick laments leaving her pastoral home, yearning for the mountain vistas and finding the mouth of a spring, essentially getting back to nature. echoes

Audio CD:


  • As I Left (2:21)
  • I Want To Go (4:38)
  • Admiration (3:53)
  • Crashing Against The Sun (4:19)
  • Wandering (4:11)
  • Wherever I Go (3:53)
  • Tiny Receptors (3:03)
  • Blood Run Through Me (5:35)
  • Seemed A River (4:41)
  • What Does Love Care (5:08)

Manufacturer ‏ : ‎ Western Vinyl
Original Release Date ‏ : ‎ 2023
Label ‏ : ‎ Western Vinyl
Country of Origin ‏ : ‎ USA
Number of discs ‏ : ‎ 1

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