Lianne La Havas – “Bittersweet”

Indulging in some healthy self-care during these troubled times: Listening to Lianne La Havas while buying candles.

No lie, that’s exactly what I’ve been up to while listening to her latest self-titled record. Getting some nice eucalyptus ones. But that’s neither here nor there.

Now, La Havas is a singer I’ve been hearing the praises of for years, but never really sat down and digested her work until this self-titled, and wow, I’m floored. Her singing is smooth, soulful, and tender. The self-titled album is framed as something of a rebirth after an eventful half-decade in La Havas’s life. In the five years since her previous record, Blood, she went through breakup with a longtime partner, and wasn’t happy with the lukewarm reception of Blood. La Havas took some time to regroup, personally and professionally, and spent the next few years steadily working on a new record and taking time for herself. As a result, this new new album feels like a rejuvenation, throughout exploring new love, heartbreak, and finding peace in independence. It’s such a composed and confident work, and so very heartfelt.

“Bittersweet” is such a pleasant and fulfilling listen, I was caught off guard. I love the defiant and probing nature of the melody, and La Havas’s singing is just so damn powerful here. What a way to kick off a record, and a terrific listen to put you in the right state of mind.

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