Irish Independent - Weekend Review - - FRONT PAGE -

Al­bums of b-sides and rar­i­ties are usu­ally just of in­ter­est to de­voted fans only, but when the artist in ques­tion is An­gel Olsen and the col­lec­tion of songs is as spe­cial as this one, it de­serves to reach a far wider au­di­ence. The Mis­souri na­tive is one of the finest tune­smiths work­ing in the US to­day and her sec­ond and third al­bums — Burn Your Fire For No Wit­ness and My Woman — demon­strate not just her gifts, but the wide scope of her in­flu­ences. It’s the same story on these ca­reer-span­ning songs, some of which have been re­leased be­fore. There’s con­sid­er­able beauty in the smartly ar­ranged duo of ‘Cal­i­for­nia’ and ‘Spe­cial’ — songs that would be con­sid­ered far more than mere b-sides by most mu­si­cians — and there’s much to ad­mire in the druggy, hyp­notic ‘Fly On Your Wall’. Olsen is at her best when she strips ev­ery­thing back and that’s cer­tainly the case on the gui­tar-and-voice pair, ‘Sans’ and ‘Only With You’. Like much of her ma­te­rial, these songs find her la­ment­ing some poor luck and poor choices in mat­ters of the heart. On the ev­i­dence of the qual­ity of these tracks, may her mis­for­tunes in love con­tinue.

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