(37-Media) Lauren Calve has been undergoing a metamorphosis in her life, a massive shift. You can hear it seeping through every song, oozing out of every lyric, and feel the shedding of her skin with every note on her first full-length album Shift out September 1. The subtle and understated yearning in her voice, the intonation in her haunting vocals and delivery, Calve is longing for something more. Through the ten-track collection of songs on Shift, she invites the listener to come along on her journey of self-discovery and change, demonstrating a musical masterclass in the art of emotional storytelling.
Shift was recorded in Nashville at 3Sirens Music Group with producer, engineer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist Dex Green (Margo Price, Aaron Lee Tasjan, Allison Russell) along with a stellar line-up of musical talent including Fred Eltringham on drums (ACM Drummer of the Year, Drumeo Country Drummer of the Year, Sheryl Crow, Willie Nelson), Audley Freed on guitar (Sheryl Crow, The Black Crowes), Robert Kearns on bass (Sheryl Crow, Lynyrd Skynyrd), Marlon Patton on drums (Larkin Poe, Lera Lynn), Jared Reynolds on bass (Ben Folds) and engineer Joe Costa (Ben Folds).
The sound reflects the environment in which the songs were written, in quarantine, mainly, and therefore in periods of silence and self-reflection. The result is a collection of songs that include the title track and first single "Shift," out May 26, with its dramatic imagery of a literal tectonic plate shift and asteroids colliding in space that illustrate her state of mind in the middle of an emotional shift. "'Shift' is the linchpin of the album," says Calve. "It sets the tone and introduces a recurring theme in Shift: facing inevitable change. The chorus line, 'Will it take me or break me under its weight, or will I take it and break away?' poses existential questions that I work through in the remaining songs. 'Shift' is the preamble that states my intention for the album: change is inevitable; the question is how do we respond in its wake?"
Shift is the follow up to her 2020 Wildfire EP, which featured the stand-out lead track, "Better Angels," written by Calve after listening to a radio interview with Jon Meacham who cited Abraham Lincoln's inaugural address on the eve of the Civil War as inspiration for his book, The Soul of America: The Battle For Our Better Angels and it reflected what the world was going through during the pandemic. With Shift, it's different from her past releases primarily because it's her first full-length and complete album of work.
Now, with the new album coming, Calve is building off the momentum she's gained with her music, from touring with the likes of Rhett Miller (she was a guest on his podcast), Ray Wylie Hubbard, Tom Paxton, Justin Townes Earle, and Amythyst Kiah, to name a few, recent writing sessions with Grammy-Award winning songwriters Jon Vezner and Don Henry, and a performance on the prestigious Mountain Stage. Calve will be on tour the rest of the year (dates below). More dates to be announced soon.
WED, June 14 at Grey Eagle Patio Stage @ 4:00pm in Asheville, NC
THU, June 15 at Bird's Nest Listening Room @ 7:00pm in Dunn, NC
SAT, June 17 at The Carroll Arts Center @ 7:30pm in Westminster, MD
SUN, June 18 at The Room at Cedar Grove @ 6:30pm in Lewes, DE
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