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Unrequited love and relationships lost and found are the themes of indie artist Rachael Sage’s 10th album, Haunted By You.
Inspired by a break-up with someone she’d been seeing for several years, the New York singer and songwriter wrote and produced all 13 original songs on the CD through her own record label, MPress Records. Sage also showcases her keyboard and guitar skills on it saying, “I pushed myself to pick up guitar to write this record because I was scared of it and took that as a cue… I gave myself a pass to try something brand new and to make mistakes that would hopefully yield something more visceral.” And that’s exactly what she accomplished on this confessional record that you’ll positively love if you’re into artists like Sara Bareilles, Ingrid Michaelson, Sarah McLachlan or The Fray.
This being the first time I’ve heard a Sage vocal, I was very much surprised by her light and wholesome tone. I suppose the album title and cover had me expecting a much deeper, sadder range, but I guess that’s why they say to never judge a book by its cover. Once I rebounded from that, I immediately latched on to the quivering delicateness of her voice which makes her work feel incredibly vulnerable and honest. She holds nothing back, sharing intimate details and personal regrets with listeners. It’s almost like the record is her musical diary into which she pours her emotions, mourning, reflecting and trying to get past this relationship, with the underlying certainty that she will eventually be better because of the experience.
Here’s a clip of her performing what is undoubtedly the album’s standout piece, “Invisible Light”:
Some may see dedicating a whole CD to a breakup as self-indulgent, but many will probably relate to the cathartic aspect. Sage runs the gamut of emotions that comes with losing someone you love, something everyone can relate to. The only difference is she does it to a cool alternative rock and acoustic soundtrack.
For more information on Haunted By You, please visit Rachael Sage’s website.