Album #159: Phoebe Bridgers – Punisher

  • Released: 2020
  • Origin: Los Angeles, California, USA
  • Label: Dead Oceans
  • Best Track: Kyoto

I feel a bit hopeless about the fact that I know nothing about Phoebe Bridgers, or at least I didn’t until a few days ago. It turns out she’s pretty big news, being described by The Telegraph as “the songwriter of the moment”, among other gushing praise.

My attention was drawn to her single ‘Garden Song’, which I liked enough to encourage me to listen to her second album Punisher. This was supposed to be released on Friday, but she ended up dropping it a day early. And why not, eh? We could all do with a nice surprise or two at the moment.

Due to my time constraints, I’m reviewing this after one and a bit listens, which is pretty ludicrous for an album with this much depth. The songwriting and lyrics are indeed excellent. Aside from ‘Garden Song’, standout tracks include the instantly catchy ‘Kyoto’, the deeply reflective ‘Chinese Satellite’ and the eerie ‘ICU’.

Bridgers says this is an album about “inner personal issues while there’s bigger turmoil in the world”. Particularly right now, it seems the perfect theme for an album.

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