From dark folk to the sweetest harmonies that’d make even Karen Carpenter dab her eyes, on fresh LP Tug of War this gobsmacking singer-songwriter has crafted a musical journey which traverses the zeniths and nadirs of her young life. Her her singularly graceful voice can swing from frank to fragile on a dime, and it curls around subtle arrangements which utilise acoustic guitar, banjo, gently warbling Rhodes, and textured kit.
There’s even a collab with fellow Kiwi troubadour Tami Neilsen, Trouble Finds a Girl, which is a brilliantly-executed skewering of victim-blaming; its strings and bell-like keys evoke some of the most beautiful moments of Beck’s Seachange album.
Having been in the biz for 10 years (if you’ve got a VPN, watch baby Jenny nail it on New Zealand’s Got Talent as a 14-year-old!), it’s clear Mitchell’s maturity isn’t put-on. But Tug of War shows that this scintillating performer has plenty of gas in the tank – she’s an artist whose abiding curiosity about the world is worn on her sleeve.
Count us as right up-front on the Mitchell float.
Tug of War by Jenny Mitchell is out July 22 via Cooking Vinyl.