One of the best things about featuring folk music on our site is that we’re always flush with new submissions that are really good. When this album came in, we were in the midst of a pandemic and, to be honest, I had very little desire to write a review. But as time has rolled on, as time has drifted from one moment to another, I finally have the inkling in my spirit to write again. Eliza Edens brings truly dulcet vocals and sincere songwriting to a cathartic, imaginative, and meaningful new folk album.
The opening track “Garden of Sound” is perfect for the spring season. Utilizing calming acoustic guitar work and Edens’ exceptional vocal, the song feels comfortable and engaging. If you haven’t heard Edens before, this track would be a wonderful introduction. The second track “Long Drive” connects to the classics of folk music. There’s something about the pace that reminds me a bit of the iconic Blaze Foley. Edens has a contemplative and poetic style about the lyrics, all while delivering vocal lines that are poignant and expressive without trying to blow anyone off the stage. The peaceful style is what draws me in and keeps me around.
“Days, Nights” is the song that allowed me to discover Eliza Edens. I’m pretty sure it was after covering this track that I added Edens to all of my folk playlists. This is the track that is why I’m writing the review, so you can imagine it’s amazing. The melody is expressive and calming, all while bringing in some unconventional production elements that create some unexplored musical textures. I really appreciate the vocal harmonies on this one. It’s a remarkable piece of folk music.
The title track “Time away from time” has more expressive acoustic guitar work. Something about this one puts me in mind of the iconic Tallest Man on Earth. Maybe it’s the willingness to experiment with melody or the “go for it” boldness on the acoustic, but there’s an unapologetic boldness to the track’s energy that impresses me with every listen. The following track “When the silence turns to sound” is absolutely lovely. I’m sure there’s a better word than lovely, but the dance between the electric guitar and the keys is on a different level than other tracks on the album. Of course the melody and vocal are characteristic of Edens’ style, but the slightly different instrumentation makes the track stand out on the album. It’s yet another gem in a collection of gems.
The penultimate track on the album is “Ramble,” which puts me in mind of another site favorite in Andrea von Kampen. It’s a calming acoustic guitar part and one of the best vocal melodies on the whole album. It feels like a hopeful dream. I’m not sure where we’re going or why we’re going (I suspect love), but the sense of travel and movement in the track is tangible and beautiful. The final track “Illusion sublime” is also amazing on the acoustic front. The acoustic layers work really well on this one, allowing it to sonically pop in ways that so many other folk songwriters can’t seem to capture. The lyrics remind me a bit of dreaming about that special someone that you wonder about in the back of your mind. Maybe the “one that got away?” In any event, it’s a cathartic, endearing track and the perfect way to end the album.
This is a remarkable piece of writing. Eliza Edens is an incredibly talented songwriter and folk artist. If you’ve made it this far, thank you for reading and considering the album. It’s certainly worth including in your life. This is the kind of music you can put on in the background while you go about life or can sit and truly focus on the poetic lyrics. I keep coming back to the word “cathartic” with this album. There are some classic folk artists I could compare to Edens here, but I’ll just leave on this note. Eliza Edens is a folk songstress of the 21st century, blending together gorgeous influences from the 20th century and her own creative genius for a truly captivating modern sound.