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Courtney Barnett Takes Her Time

By Marc Zisman |

With "Things Take Time, Take Time", the Australian pens a third album that is even more introspective than usual. A beautiful record conceived during lockdown and after a break-up...

From the very first seconds of Things Take Time, Take Time, the loose pout is there, the nonchalant guitars too, the disillusioned prose carried by endless sentences too, in short Courtney Barnett seems to start her third album on what could be thought of as drivel. But it's far from that. Supported by Stella Mozgawa, Warpaint's drummer who also dabbles in synthesizer here, we watch the Australian's art unfold before us.

A fascinating reflection of her ever-unique personal poetry, Things Take Time, Take Time was not only conceived during the pandemic - forced confinement is the perfect fuel for her inspiration - but it's also her first record since splitting up with Jen Cloher, who had been an important part of her life for many years. A break-up recalled with modesty on Splendour, and a reminder that when it comes to introspection, Courtney Barnett remains untouchable.

Barnett's contemplative style fits perfectly with her eternal sonic tastes, which includes the minimalism of the Velvet Underground, Jonathan Richman or her buddy Kurt Vile (with whom she had co-written the excellent Lotta Sea Lice in 2017). Not to forget the otherworldly Arthur Russell, who comes to mind when a vintage drum machine pops up on Turning Green.

The simplicity of the facade of this magnificent third album, those repetitive sequences too, give even more strength to Barnett's songs, to her soothing phrases despite the pandemic and the separation. Things Take Time, Take Time also champions a certain benevolence. A sincere, never namby-pamby sentiment that makes this record truly endearing.

Revisit the time that Qobuz met Courtney Barnett on the occasion of the release of her album Tell Me How You Really Feel: