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Imagine Our Love

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Album Review

On their debut EP, Cavalry of Light, Lavender Diamond proved they have a way with seemingly effortless, timeless-sounding songs. Their first full-length, Imagine Our Love, delivers more of their classic but fresh sound, this time with a bit more polish. As the album title suggests, Imagine Our Love's songs are about looking at love from a distance that is sometimes wistful, sometimes hopeful — or on occasion, both, as on the opening track, "Oh No," where singer Becky Stark's honeyed voice repeats "when will I love again?" over and over, going from optimistic to despairing and back again. It's a trick the band used on Cavalry of Light's "You Broke My Heart" and it works well here too, giving this song and "Like an Arrow" a hypnotic simplicity. The more fleshed-out sound of Imagine Our Love does justice not only to Stark's immaculate soprano, but to the band's eclectic sound. The lavish strings that grace most of the album are surprisingly versatile, lending extra buoyancy to "Open Your Heart"'s soaring pop and slow-burning drama to the countrified "Garden Rose." Songs such as "My Shadow Is a Monday," "Bring Me a Song," and "Here Comes One" show that while Lavender Diamond's heart belongs to the late-'60s/early-'70s heyday of singer/songwriters, AM pop, and country-pop, the band's homages never feel contrived. They aren't all sweetness and light, either, although "Find a Way" positively radiates hope; on "Side of the Lord," Stark laments, "I don't know if I'm to the left or the right," adding just enough grit to the song's mother-of-pearl luminosity. Gently compelling, Imagine Our Love is a striking debut.

Biography

Formed: 2004 in Los Angeles, CA

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s, '10s

The folk delight that is Lavender Diamond originally came to life in Bird Songs of the Bauharoque, a punk operetta inspired by the work of American painter/architect Paul Laffoley. Vocalist Becky Stark wrote and created the piece with a friend while living in Providence, RI, and starred as Lavender herself, a winsome part bird/part human who wants peace on earth. The indie stage show was such a hit at home that Stark and company went on to tour 56 cities across North America in 2003. Her debut solo...
Full bio
Imagine Our Love, Lavender Diamond
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