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Review | Hilary Woods – Heartbox

photo credit: Joshua Wright
photo credit: Joshua Wright

The Last Mixed Tape reviews Heartbox, the brand new extended-play from alternative artist Hilary Woods.

There comes a point during the sweeping epic ‘Bathing’ that the sheer weight of Heartbox comes crashing into focus. It’s a moment where all points converge, and the song’s slow methodical build blooms into the fuller sound of the E.P. itself.

Heartbox is a very different world to its predecessor Night. There’s a more dreamlike quality to the music with more space to get lost in. Single hits of clicking rhythm seem to echo continuously into the background while Woods’ own voice whispers softly close-by, as we drift through the record’s wide-open landscape.

Closing on ‘Sabbath’ (a re-imagining of ‘Secret Sabbath from Night) the stark sea-change into tone and mood on Heartbox is seen all the more. The production’s patience to let each note and lyric hang in the air allows the E.P. itself to the same. Suspended from beat to beat, word to word, moment to moment the music of Heartbox defies convention and exists in its place.

Hilary Woods is a songwriter who occupies the periphery. Living on the outskirts of the Irish music scene and creating music that speaks to her own will and want (and indeed ours) Woods’ is allowed to deliver a sound untouched by outside expectation. Heartbox is the “other”, and in a world where the familiar is rewarded its promising to know Woods is out there doing things her way.

Rating: 9/10 

Heartbox by Hilary Woods is out now.

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