Pillow Queens – Leave the Light On
[Royal Mountain Records]
Pillow Queens seem to be ageing like a fine wine; a burgundy with complex notes of layered vocals, gratifying guitar and sincere songwriting. In no time, they’ve shared their second album Leave the Light On, evading any ‘Second Album’ issues after the success of In Waiting.
Each song is striking, your heart skipping a beat as the poetic lyrics flow into your headphones. This has become a luxurious feature of modern Irish music that widens artist’s landscapes. Pillow Queens join the likes of CMAT, Thumper and Saint Sister on the roster of acts composing beautiful tracks. Hearts and Minds is a faultless example of a track with the satisfying edge of picking apart hidden meanings. “I was born to face the forlay / I would say I’m about one day old” and “You came to worship but the godless kind” stick in your mind like lyrical knives.
Small touches like the synths on House that Sailed Away and the careful pacing on Try Try Try show how the band are expanding their sound. Falsettos give way to emotive guitars that speak for themselves on Historian. The bridge tumbles down into near chaos before regaining balance, like a bad memory throwing your train of thought off course.
Leave the Light On could soundtrack a sad solo dance in the kitchen as you make a meal for one as your poor heart recovers. An introspective album, the record doesn’t drown in self-pity but floats to the surface as a guiding light of better days. It shows that Pillow Queens are becoming timeless leaders in Irish and, more importantly, worldwide music.
Words: Sophia McDonald