Singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Olivia Broadfield
creates a personalized anthology on Eyes Wide Open. Her songs
each tell a story as she strings them along and narrates each track
using threads of universal themes. Produced by Broadfield and her
collaborator and fellow musician Josh Crocker, Eyes Wide
Open rings out with soft rock dancetracks like Erin McCarley
tethered to melodic hooks with fiery boosters and silky raptures relatable
to The Pierces.
Broadfield's lyrics have a bittersweet taste to them, like in "Don't
Cry" when she expresses, "Right now I'm the walking wounded
/ Mind set on getting out alive / How I wish I could just keep turning
back time / Forgive me if I cannot try harder / You make it seem like
everything I do means nothing at all." She keeps a positive outlook
as her narrations travel in and out of periods of dismay and confusion,
which tap into universal feelings that everyone can relate to in their
own way. Many of her songs have a general pop-rock molding that is
familiar to the fittings of Mandy Moore and Courtney Jaye,
but Broadfield tweaks her tunes with embellishments and gently laced
finery like orchestral overtones and ethereally bowed synth effects
which distinguish her songs from other songstresses. Her tracks are
finessed to Mandy Moore's pleasant temperament, but the attitude is
all Olivia Broadfield.
The restive strokes of "Hang On" bode well with Broadfield's
soothing register, and morph into a balmy rustling in "Lost In
You." A few tracks have a springtime freshness like "Holding
Onto You" and "The Weight," but the nursery rhyme scheme
in the rhythmic patterns of "Don't Cry" has a cheery sprint
that tows audiences right along with its merriment. The ethereal souffle
of winged synths spanning across the title track have shimmery echoes
which convert to an upbeat, techno-pop dancetrack in "Crashing
Down" that is made for clubs. The soft rock trimmings have a
breezy feel in the spacey synths, which make the tracks feel airy
and pliable in Broadfield's touch.
Olivia Broadfield is the Olivia Newton-John of today's generation.
Her songs are seamed in swirling riffs and plush synths that mortar
soft rock dancetracks with silky raptures and ethereal lifts wrapped
snugly around Broadfield's vocals. Eyes Wide Open is one of
those pleasant sounding albums that will send you right out of a dark
mood and into a sunny perspective on life.
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