If you are searching for a collection of songs that will make you experience an array of emotions, look no further. Singer/Songwriter Amber Edgar’s latest EP Good Will Rise will make you feel, and often. The four tracks here speak larger volumes than many twelve-track albums do. What makes Amber Edgar’s music so impactful? Edgar’s brilliant, raw lyrics mesh with her unique instrumentation and gorgeous vocals to create an EP that will move even the most deadpan music appreciator.
The title track begins the collection on a hopeful note. Edgar’s crystal-clear mezzo-soprano voice shines alongside her main accompaniment–the acoustic guitar. The combination of her sweet yet soulful voice and the acoustic guitar creates a wonderfully unassuming sound, similar to much of Priscilla Ahn’s music. The sound, alongside the modestly hopeful lyrics, gains further flavor through a layer of horns played by one of her very talented musicians. Yet the horns do not take control of the sound; Edgar’s beautiful lyrics and voice still shine the brightest, only adding to the hope that “good will rise.”
The use of the Wurlitzer in “The Key” and “Danny Was So Young” adds a bit of a funky sound to the hauntingly beautiful songs. “The Key” contains some eerie background vocals towards the end that really leaves listeners with a slightly unsettling feeling, fitting for the EP.
“Danny Was So Young” provides a bit of discomfort mainly through the painfully vulnerable lyrics focused on friends that have committed suicide. The acoustic guitar makes perfect sense to be the lead instrument on such a delicate song. The level of maturity it takes to tackle such a dark topic in such a poetic way is simply astounding.
In the song, there certainly exists a feeling of melancholic mourning that all who have lost loved ones can relate to, yet lingering under it all is still hope that normalcy will return. The lyrics compare the pain one feels in missing friends to an anchor. What a brilliant way to imply that the pain does not disappear–it becomes a part of daily life alongside all the other emotions one feels. I can really not say enough about the beautifully poetic nature of “Danny Was So Young” and, really, all the tracks off Good Will Rise.
“Only In Dreams” highlights Edgar’s skills as a multi-talented instrumentalist, beautiful vocalist and amazing lyricist. With assists from other skilled musicians, “Only In Dreams” opens with a lovely banjo/cello combination. Other instruments, such as drums, slowly trickle into the arrangement. Edgar shows her impressive range by soulfully dipping low in the verses and shining at the high notes in the chorus. The lyrics tackle the topic of love through beautiful sailing and nautical imagery, with lyrics like, “Well I am just a little boat/When I see you I begin to float.” The overarching metaphor of “dreaming” really takes the track home, with the closing repetition of “Never wake me up” showing listeners that lyrics can also double as poems.
Amber Edgar’s latest EP Good Will Rise will blow you away with its unique instrumentation, beautiful vocals, and poetic lyrics, leaving you to press repeat over and over again. –Krisann Janowitz