9 Songs, 46 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Singer-songwriter Matthew Houck’s seventh studio album opens with a similar desert incantation as 2013’s Muchacho, but what he summons differs dramatically from the heartbreak that panged throughout his last album. For starters, parenthood has shifted his perspective, and he explores the experience on the ebullient, country-pop-rock of “New Birth in New England” as well as the meditative, pedal steel-twined “My Beautiful Boy.” But more than those milestones, he revels in his long-fought-for stability. “I stood out in the rain like the rain might come and wash my eyes clean,” he sings on the synth-driven “C’est La Vie No. 2.” Rather than wait for an answer from the heavens, Houck gets on with living, asserting, “I don’t stand out in the rain to have my eyes washed clean no more.” 

EDITORS’ NOTES

Singer-songwriter Matthew Houck’s seventh studio album opens with a similar desert incantation as 2013’s Muchacho, but what he summons differs dramatically from the heartbreak that panged throughout his last album. For starters, parenthood has shifted his perspective, and he explores the experience on the ebullient, country-pop-rock of “New Birth in New England” as well as the meditative, pedal steel-twined “My Beautiful Boy.” But more than those milestones, he revels in his long-fought-for stability. “I stood out in the rain like the rain might come and wash my eyes clean,” he sings on the synth-driven “C’est La Vie No. 2.” Rather than wait for an answer from the heavens, Houck gets on with living, asserting, “I don’t stand out in the rain to have my eyes washed clean no more.” 

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