Sacred Bones – March 13th
Enshrouded in spectral mystery, Birthmarks is a deeply sensory, corporeal record. Opening with ominous, droning drums and growling strings, Hilary Woods’ vocals are evocative, whispered incantations that glide amongst the eerie landscapes of the album. Sometimes sparse, sometimes densely textural and populated, the sonic terrains Woods crafts are earnest, haunting, and ritualistic.
Recorded while heavily pregnant, between Galway and Oslo last winter, at the times the drum beats feel like a pulsating heartbeat, claustrophobic and all-encompassing. And this intensity pervades throughout, as across the eight tracks, Woods explores fluctuating experiences of selfhood and becoming expressed with unbridled ferocity. There’s a visceral, cinematic quality to Birthmarks that further accentuates the inner and external turmoil at the core of the record, leaving a poignant, transcendental impression.