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Waxahatchee - 'Ivy Tripp'

by DavidBeech
DavidBeech
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on 24 April 2015 in Albums & EPs
Record Label Wichita Recordings
Release date Out Now
Rating 9/10

If Cerulean Salt, the second record from Alabama's Waxahatchee, was interested in the realisation that “your childhood is over, your innocence is gone”, then Ivy Tripp sees her accepting that fact and instead of mooning over it, she turns her attention to the apparent lack of direction that follows such acceptance well in to middle-age. Fitting then, that the recurring themes of the record (relationship breakdowns, self-destruction et al), are more mature than previous outings; even the song titles themselves ('Bonfire', 'The Dirt') reflect the sleeve's rich, earthy palette, suggesting Ivy Tripp as the seasoned autumn to Cerulean Salt's metaphorically green summer. With the subject matter maturing somewhat, one might have expected the tone of the music to follow suit, yet that's rarely the case here. Though the instrumentation has diversified, the '90s college rock aesthetic is still in full swing and it's easy to imagine tracks such as 'The Dirt' and 'Under A Rock' making their way on to many a pre-Nevermind mix-tape. And though outwardly Ivy Tripp bubbles with a frothy pop veneer, repeat listens forces such froth to dissipate, allowing Katie Crutchfield to reveal herself as more vulnerable than ever before; the cadaverously skeletal 'Half Moon', as well as final track 'Bonfire', both prime examples of how the record's most stripped back and candid moments are also its deepest.

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