Album Review

Sarah Jarosz - Polaroid Lovers

As a whole, Polaroid Lovers offers us a collection of snapshots that, when all pieced together, bring into focus the full messy evolution of Sarah Jarosz.

Album - Sarah Jarosz - Polaroid Lovers
January 30, 2024 6:16 pm GMT

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Sarah Jarosz - Polaroid Lovers

Label: Rounder Records

Producer: Daniel Tashian

Release Date: January 26, 2024

Tracklisting:

1. Jealous Moon

2. When The Lights Go Out

3. Runaway Train

4. The Way It Is Now

5. Dying Ember

6. Columbus & 89th

7. Take The High Road

8. Don’t Break Down On Me

9. Days Can Turn Around

10. Good At What I Do

11. Mezcal And Lime

Sarah Jarosz has been a household name at the intersection of country, folk and Americana for over a decade. On her latest offering, Polaroid Lovers, the singer-songwriter has shaken things up, allowing the picture to fully develop.

Jarosz’s seventh studio album is a distinct shift in a storied career first established in her teens. Now, with four Grammy awards and a celebrated catalog in her possession, she’s pushing the boundaries of all she can be as an artist.

Polaroid Lovers chronicles her creative and personal journey as she immerses herself entirely in co-writing, while also stretching the boundaries of her trademark ethereal folk sound . Over the album’s 11 tracks, each song serves as a moment in time, with little glimpses of the person she was bubbling beneath the surface of the artist she has become.

From the opening track, ‘Jealous Moon’ – an effervescent display of hearty pop-rock drums and sugary vocals – all preconceived notions of the singer-songwrite quickly fade away. Immediately, a new artist begins to take shape in the bubbly lullaby of ‘When The Lights Go Out’ and country-pop ballad ‘Runaway Train'.

The album is not an absolute left turn, though, with Jarosz’s quintessential storytelling and hallmark sincerity bringing the work to life. Tracks like the lulling serenade ‘Columbus & 89th’, the easy-listening ‘Days Can Turn Around’ and the contemplative ‘Good At What I Do’ still whisper with the genius that first put her on the map.

While she’s introducing sounds that are by no means inventive, these songs still represent a step outside of Jarosz’s nuanced brand of country folk. Where some offerings can be forgettable – 'Take the High Road' and 'Don’t Break Down on Me' get easily lost in the mix – others awaken us to an artist in flux.

As a whole, Polaroid Lovers offers us a collection of snapshots that, when all pieced together, bring into focus the full messy evolution of Sarah Jarosz.

7/10

Sarah Jarosz's new project, Polaroid Lovers, is out now via Rounder Records.

For more on Sarah Jarosz, see below:

Written by Alli Patton
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