Mol Sullivan “Goose”

Independent, 2024

Assured and dynamic debut emerges after long gestation.

Mol Sullivan Goose artworkHailing from Cincinnatti, Mol Sullivan has created a compelling debut in “Goose”. It’s at times measured and hymnal and at others eccentric both in arrangement and delivery. This is a post-sobriety album with a couple of tracks (‘Biting Your Teeth’ and ‘Still Trying’) referencing her transition from pre to after but this is not an overwhelming arc and does not make the album didactic in any way. These are just moments in a life. 

Through repeated listens there are touchstones that emerge. The strength of Sullivan’s voice, the sense of whole to the album created by the often idiosyncratic production using unusual instruments (‘Ask’ for example)  or time signatures (‘Cannonball’ has a delightful drone as a backdrop that is at once off key but also engaging), the musicianship of her contributors (including Spencer Tweedy) and the songs that all stand up individually as well as part of a seeming cycle. Lyrically Sullivan creates sharp narratives for her ruminations: ‘Like This Now’ is particularly arresting. 

These are not run of the mill Americana songs in either delivery or arrangement. This album is a long, long way from a Nashville songwriter’s circle. There are flecks of jazz and ambient as well as melancholia-suffused poems set to a sonic background. 

Intelligent and compelling, this is a debut worth seeking out if you are in the market for individual voices armed with arresting tunes.

8/10
8/10

About Keith Hargreaves 365 Articles
Riding the one eyed horse into dead town the scales fell from his eyes. Music was the only true god at once profane and divine The dust blew through his mind as he considered the offering... And then he scored it out of ten and waited for the world to wake up
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