U.S. Girls Heavy Light 4AD
Heavy Light, the eighth U.S. Girls album and her third on 4AD, continues where 2018’s critically cherished In a Poem Unlimited left off, smoothing out her once-DIY sound into something more pop-aligned but no less potent.
Intriguingly, this time around the mood seems to be reflective rather than outright angry. She invites an army of her musicians to share personal memories on three interludes (Advice to Teenage Self, The Most Hurtful Thing, The Color of Your Childhood Bedroom). The result is delicately mournful, as each voice turns over the past, and taken together these fragments form a kind of emotional anchor to the album, framing Heavy Light as a record preoccupied by time, and by hindsight.
Remy’s righteous rage isn’t entirely dissipated. The album sees her confront capitalism (4 American Dollars), the capacity of the state to deceive the masses (And Yet It Moves/Y Se Mueve), and the relative insignificance of the human experience (The Quiver to the Bomb). If last album In a Poem Unlimited helped Remy broaden her audience by taking aim at the patriarchy over a disco beat, Heavy Light feels more theatrical, pinning her politics to piano melodies and gospel choirs. The result is no less impactful.