THE STAVES

The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - MUSIC REVIEWS - TONY CLAY­TON-LEA

If I Was ★★★★

At­lantic

More than two years af­ter their de­but, Dead & Born & Grown, was re­leased, and fol­low­ing it with non-stop tour­ing, it soon be­came ap­par­ent to folk/pop sis­ters Emily, Jes­sica, and Camilla Staveley-Tay­lor that they had no ideas for their fol­low-up al­bum. Cue a trip to Justin Ver­non’s re­mote Wis­con­sin stu­dio, where the sis­ters toyed with ideas and be­gan to con­struct a new batch of ma­te­rial. Such soli­tude proved ben­e­fi­cial, for songs such as No Me No You No More, Let me Down, Don’t You Call Me Any­more, and Sad­ness Don’t Own Me high­light the emo­tional holes that oc­cur when all you see day af­ter day is one ho­tel room that looks like all the oth­ers. Not that this is a self-in­dul­gent on-the-road sec­ond al­bum; rather it looks at the empti­ness of un­ful­filled re­la­tion­ships, and the sense that an un­con­ven­tional life isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.

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