12 Songs, 38 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Angel Olsen has made great strides between the homespun folk of 2012’s Half Way Home and the bold, noir-ish indie rock of 2016’s MY WOMAN, a journey documented on the rarities collection Phases. Ranging from compilation tracks (the moody “Fly on Your Wall”) to studio outtakes (the MY WOMAN–era “Special”), hushed (“May as Well”) to howling (the Roy Orbison garage rock of “Sweet Dreams”), the music here is a testament not just to Olsen’s range but her evolution as a songwriter, all anchored by her fluttering—but powerful—voice.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Angel Olsen has made great strides between the homespun folk of 2012’s Half Way Home and the bold, noir-ish indie rock of 2016’s MY WOMAN, a journey documented on the rarities collection Phases. Ranging from compilation tracks (the moody “Fly on Your Wall”) to studio outtakes (the MY WOMAN–era “Special”), hushed (“May as Well”) to howling (the Roy Orbison garage rock of “Sweet Dreams”), the music here is a testament not just to Olsen’s range but her evolution as a songwriter, all anchored by her fluttering—but powerful—voice.

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About Angel Olsen

Raised in St. Louis, Missouri and later relocating to Chicago, Illinois, indie folk singer/songwriter Angel Olsen began performing in St. Louis coffee shops in her teenage years, eventually branching out and tapping into a network of like-minded artists. Olsen worked with California musician Emmett Kelly as part of his collective the Cairo Gang, singing harmonies on Bonnie "Prince" Billy's 2010 album The Wonder Show of the World, as well as its 2011 follow-up, Wolfroy Goes to Town. In 2010, Olsen released Strange Cacti, a cassette of original Americana songs that was later reissued as a 12", both with Bathetic Records. Half Way Home, a spare album with understated arrangements and a homespun approach somewhere between '50s country crooners and her indie contemporaries, was issued with the same label in 2012.

In early 2013, Olsen added drummer Josh Jaeger and bassist Stewart Bronaugh to flesh out her stripped-back sound, which added a brooding, garage rock appeal to her intimate music. Soon after forming the trio, Olsen returned to the studio with producer John Congleton to track sessions for her third album, Burn Your Fire for No Witness, which saw release in early 2014 via Jagjaguwar. The record was critically well-received and marked Olsen's debut on the Billboard 200.

By then resettled in Asheville, North Carolina, she expanded her sound still further on her fourth LP, 2016's My Woman, touring as a six-piece to support its release. Jagjaguwar followed it in 2017 with Phases, a compilation of Olsen rarities such as early demos and unreleased material from the My Woman sessions. ~ Fred Thomas & Scott Kerr

HOMETOWN
St. Louis, MO
BORN
1987

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