Text in englischer Sprache verfügbarLos Angeles-based folk singer/songwriter Shannon Lay spent the first half of her career relying on light guitar lines and narrative-driven lyrics. By her third album, 2019's August, she began incorporating wider instrumentation, including drums and saxophone. Lay grew up in Redondo Beach, California, and by 13 was taking guitar lessons. In her late teens, she joined a band, Facts on File, but it wasn't until she was drafted into the group Feels that her career began to take off. Alongside band duties and retail work, Lay recorded demos at home, eventually collating them into Holy Heartache in 2015. Learning to home record gave Lay the necessary skills to ensure she always had a hand in the production of her records, which she put to use on her debut album in 2017, All This Life Goin Down. The remainder of the year was busy for Lay, as she embarked on two separate tours (in support of Kevin Morby and Ty Segall, respectively) before releasing her second album, Living Water. In August of the same year, Lay finally managed to quit her retail job and pursue music full time, an act so significant to her that she named her third album August. The record saw release in 2019, after she signed to Sub Pop; Ty Segall co-produced it and played some of the additional instruments alongside Mikal Cronin, who provided saxophone.
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Alternativ und Indie - Erschienen am 23. August 2019 | SUB POP
In August 2017, Shannon Lay achieved a milestone many musicians can only dream of: she quit her day job. In an era when it's growing increasingly difficult to make a living simply by making music, this is no small achievement, and if there's a quiet confidence and joy in Lay's 2019 album August, her first solo LP since becoming a full-time musician, it is palpable and richly deserved. Like most of Lay's solo material, August puts the focus on her voice and guitar, the latter either an acoustic, or an electric clean enough to serve the same stylistic function. But Ty Segall, who co-produced the sessions with Lay, has done just enough to fill out the sound that this music sounds bigger and more expressive without ever approaching a sense of clutter. The addition of a bass, snare drum, and fiddle on the title cut gives the music a dynamic sense that's striking without compromising the intimacy of the performances, and the unexpected punctuation of a saxophone on "Death Up Close" achieves similar rewards. As a guitarist, Lay's fingerpicking is strong and fluid, suggesting John Fahey's influence is still being felt in the last months of the 2010s, and as a songwriter, she creates tunes with a simple grace that's a superb match for the lyrics which revel in the glorious mysteries of the world around us. And it's welcome to hear a contemporary artist who so comfortably embraces their folkie side without a sense of irony and with both feet planted firmly in reality; Shannon Lay lives in the real world even as she's fascinated with all that is not obvious to us, and she's rarely in better form than on August. Anyone this good certainly deserves not to work in retail. © Mark Deming /TiVo