The Harmaleighs “She Won’t Make Sense” (Nettwerk, 2019)

The Harmaleighs is a Nashville duet formed by guitarist Haley Grant, bassist Kaylee Jasperson and Susan. Technically, that should make a trio, right? But truth be told, Susan is not a real person, as she’s just a cover name personifying Grant’s anxiety. And that is at the focal point of the band’s sophomore record ‘She Won’t Make Sense‘, as its ten tracks form a dialogue between Grant and her inner self. The wording is direct and gives a raw representation of what’s going on in the songwriter’s mind, and that’s a nice change from stories about heartbreaks, birds and flat tires on country roads.

The album opens with a stumbling electric piano line that sets the tone for the whole record: it’s disconcerting, bizarre and totally cool at the same time. The following track ‘Sorry I’m Busy‘ exudes a very different flavour, driven by a hard hit drum kit and fuzzed-out guitars, smelling like teens rocking out daddy’s garage. That’s enough to get the listener hooked to this aural psychoanalysis for the rest of the record. Grant and Jasperson’s voices melt together perfectly. This, the abundance of synth layers and the very Beatlesque melodies make for a catchy and smooth sounding release, very diverse in tonal textures and nuances. A special thumbs up goes to ‘Don’t Panic‘ and its reminiscence of The Clientele, only less masculine and more warped.

Melodic psychoanalysis at its best

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