ALBUM OF THE WEEK
Annie Clark used to be confined to the indie margins thanks to associations with Polyphonic Spree, Sufjan Stevens and, then, her own acclaimed solo albums. But last year, she became a staple in the gossip pages, too, as a result of her romantic relationship with the British model Cara Delevingne. The pair have subsequently gone their separate ways, and it’s clear the whirlwind courtship has inspired several tracks on this fifth album — her most autobiographical by far. “If you want to know about my life,” the previously fame-adverse Clark recently said, “listen to this record.” Tidbits about models and break-ups are all well and good, but what stands out is the quality of the music. Masseducation features several of her most immediately accessible songs including the emotionally racked ballad, ‘New York’, and the chart-baiting ‘Young Lover’. There’s anger, too, not least on the acidic ‘Los Ageless’ — a song that could have comfortably sat on the superlative self-titled album from 2014. If the album sounds like the most commercial she has yet released that could be down to the presence of producer Jack Antonoff, the Grammy-winning guitarist with Fun, who worked extensively on Taylor Swift’s all-conquering 1989. Clark will be showcasing songs from this album at a pair of shows in Dublin’s Olympia next weekend.