Artist Spotlight

Review: Lucy Schwartz, “Timekeeper”

No Comments 10 September 2013

Review: Lucy Schwartz, “Timekeeper”

“But why should you listen to Timekeeper? Because Lucy Schwartz may have a lot of buzz, but she also boasts a big voice and understands her craft.”

Artist: Lucy Schwartz

Album: Timekeeper

Genre: Pop / Rock

RIYL: A Fine Frenzy, Katie Herzig, Leona Naess, Chantal Kreviazuk, Sara Bareilles

Lucy Schwartz Timekeeper

It should come as no surprise after about 10 seconds into the opening track of Timekeeper that Lucy Schwartz has created some serious buzz surrounding the release of this record. You may have heard a few of her songs without realizing it; her material, including one of the tracks on this outing, has been featured in some high-profile soundtracks (Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part 1 and Shrek Forever After to name a few). And it’s easy to understand why. Lucy’s songs have a very cinematic quality to them, dynamic and bright with relatable flow and style.

But why should you listen to Timekeeper? Because Lucy Schwartz may have a lot of buzz, but she also boasts a big voice and understands her craft. It’s clear she’s stretching herself, pushing the limits of her songwriting beyond what we’ve heard from her previously. And at the age of 23, there’s a maturity and restraint that bodes well for Lucy’s burgeoning career. She walks the line between pop and rock and dips low into each side at her leisure.

“Ghost in My House” is a great opener, and has a broad appeal that accomplishes a rare feat: I can see younger and older audiences relating to this energetic and fresh sound. “My Friend” exhibits some of the quirk and nearly visible “wink” and nod that Lucy excels at throughout the record. “Feel So Fine” is a standout for me, but I’m a sucker for a torchy, lush, romanticized melody and vocal. Beyond that, it’s just a wonderful example of her versatility as a writer. And even more impressive as it blends into “Curse” and “Marie Antoinette,” both evoking strong visual imagery and carrying that other-worldly romantic element forward.

That quirky cool factor returns on the charming “Time Will Tell,” complete with the somehow perfect pairing of Lucy’s vocals with the addition of banjo and slide guitar. It should feel like more of a departure from the other songs before it, but it manages to instead showcase yet another side of her musical aesthetic. And it’s one of the strongest tracks on Timekeeper. Arrested Development fans may recognize “Boomerang,” a fun track with an infectious beat that could make even the stodgiest person on earth stand up and dance (and one that went immediately into my personal playlist).

And as they say “the hits just keep coming” in a seemingly endless stream as “Captain Sunshine” brings a Beatles-esque vibe to the mix complete with sing-a-long vocals that seem made for an indie soundtrack. You can imagine the credits rolling as the final strings are plucked to a close. “Fire Away” is an ethereal track with a light touch and lilting vocals full of warmth and a memorable melody. The album closes with the appropriately titled “Heaven,” a track that embodies all of the material on Timekeeper, with a mesmerizing ability to transcend the audible to create vivid imagery and evoke emotion with a simple, lovely performance that perfectly captures Lucy’s subtleties as a vocalist and writer.

What Lucy Schwartz lacks in years, she more than makes up for in ambition and a quiet confidence to step out with a wealth of material to show off her strengths as a songwriter and producer. Having that critical ear is key to making this material work. The melodies themselves are simple, but the arrangement and production are not. With Timekeeper, Lucy Schwartz solidifies her place as an empowered and creative songwriter. This is also a winning vocal performance piece, and she’s not settling for average or middling. We have a lot to look forward to as Lucy continues to grow into herself as an artist and stretches the limits of her talent.

 


Lucy Schwartz website: http://www.lucyschwartzmusic.com/

 

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