05 Emily SteinwallWelcome to the Garden
Emily Steinwall
Independent (emilysteinwall.bandcamp.com/album/welcome-to-the-garden)

There is much depth to this album, yet the second time I listened to it I nearly missed it. This is not because the content is forgettable, nor is it the result of a vignette-type album that lacks the stamina to round out an 80-minute CD length, rather it’s a testament to the curation of the recording’s seven intriguing, yet smooth, tracks. I am thinking more of the production and programming when I say smooth, as the tracks presented contain far more depth than the type of music we tend to associate with smoothness. That being said, the instance in which I “nearly missed” this album was a result of being preoccupied with some household tasks. To fit this much artistry into a release that can also be enjoyed in a casual background context speaks volumes about the mastermind behind it: Emily Steinwall. 

I have known Steinwall’s saxophone playing and brief forays into singing for close to a decade now, so it is exciting to hear her original compositions and ample vocal chops shine on this debut release. Excellent programming results in two of my favourite songs being the title track and the closer, Courage My Love, which fades into a lovely half-minute soundscape of birdsongs. Exactly what we need to hear in the middle of a dark pandemic winter, but I would recommend listening any time!

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