Madison Beer – Silence Between Songs

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Madison Beer’s Silence Between Songs is a record that will act like a time travel machine to listeners, especially since the record presents a holy union of The Birds, The Beatles, The Turtles and Queen. While all these artists are from a musical era long gone by, you don’t have to be an old or tortured soul for you to relate to the emotionally heavy lyrics and the nostalgic sound.

And to prepare us for what lies ahead – and it’s not an easy journey – she kicks off the record with “Spinnin,” the final single to be released from her 14-track Sophomore album. “Did the world stop spinning / Nothing seems to change / I’m stuck at the beginning / And I’m in pain / Did the sun stop rising,” she sings in “Spinnin” of a situation that is no doubt familiar to us humans as we go through this thing called life. Some days there’s joy, but there are times when you feel like you’re stuck in a meaningless loop, and “Spinnin” is all about those less joyful times.

The third track “Envy the Leaves” is another song that’s about finding life in a joyless place, as she sings about envying the leaves who are so carefree “through the seasons, unaware of the fall.” A truly touching part sees her singing, “Why don’t we lie / And act like / The best is yet to come / Why don’t we try that / Just for once.” “Envy the Leaves” is like a reminder that the best thing about life is not to always take it too seriously. However, I fail to understand why it follows the naughty song, “Sweet Relief,” rather than coming after “Spinnin,” since they both feel like complementary songs.

By the time I got to the fourth track “17,” I was already thinking that this album was one of lyrical excellence. How many of us look back at our pasts and wish there was a way to go back and do things differently? Following closely to this feeling is the fear that we might be too late to straighten out our lives and live them the way we would treasure and be proud of tomorrow. “17” perfectly captures these feelings in a nostalgic sort of way that you find yourself reflecting on your own life by the time the ending notes fade out.

We’ll never change, what time fades” from the fifth track “Ryder” may just be a standout lyric for me.

The seventh track “I Wonder” sees Beer shedding the pain of the past for a new and brighter day that leads to even brighter tomorrows. “I wonder why / All of the clouds clear from the sky / I wonder why / All of the tears dry from my eyes.”

The melancholic “At Your Worst” acts like an emotional dampener to the more hopeful, “I Wonder.” “But I hope I never hate myself / The way I know you hate yourself / It hurts to see you hurt the ones / Who love you at your worst,” she sings, her gentle and soulful voice lending it an additional level of emotions.

It’s not a wonder that we get to feel these things from Silence Between Songs, as each of the songs are actually Beer’s lived experiences, which she revisited when writing her book.

Speaking on the book paving the way for the album, she said, “There are songs on the album that definitely were inspired to be written during the time of writing the book, and I think that getting that deeply into some really serious things that I’ve been through, and just facing certain facts that maybe I’d been running from prior, it made me want to write about them. Having a lot of really important conversations, for me, was very eye-opening – specifically the song about my brother, and there’s also a song called ‘At Your Worst’. Those conversations were really sparked around writing the book, and then afterwards, after writing those chapters, talking about these things – I would always feel so connected with someone, whoever I was speaking to about it, and just thinking, ‘there could be people that would really relate to this topic.’ I’m aware that those people might not read my book but maybe they’ll give a song a listen – it’s a little less of a commitment, so I was like ‘we should have a song about these things, I feel like this could reach and touch a lot of people when they listen to it.”

You can tell that careful attention was paid to the lyricism on Silence Between Songs, because by the time you’re done listening, you feel as if you’ve not only listened to a record but relived a lifetime.

As for her vocals, Beer wonderfully took advantage of the soulful nature of her voice to elevate the song’s worthy messages.