Throughout Turn Out the Lights, her groundbreaking second album, and first for Matador Records, she refers to herself as a masochist, a hypocrite, a jumble of faulty circuitry resulting from a flawed design. A blistering examination of depression and self-doubt, her album displays just how exhausting it can be to find even semblances of hope when feeling drowned by anxieties. Over the course of 45 minutes, she exposes her deepest insecurities in an effort to form a meaningful connection with her audience, finding no easy answers along the way. Emerging from the DIY scene in Nashville in 2015,. Baker cited The Devil and God Are Raging Inside Me as an influence on her album, and the appreciation is mutual, as Jessie Lacey has performed a subdued cover of Sprained Ankle on multiple occasions. Like the classic 2006 record, Turn Out the Lights is able to wring tension out of its quiet moments before culminating in explosive crescendos like its thundering title track
Her Matador Records debut, Turn Out the Lights is the much-anticipated follow-up to the ruminating 2015 breakthrough of Tennessee singer/songwriter Julien Baker. While Sprained Ankle was recorded in a professional studio in Richmond, Virginia, it was with help from a friend who was interning there, and Baker, an 18-year-old college freshman at the time, was the sole performer. Unexpectedly - to the songwriter - it was picked up by 6131 Records and eventually made Billboard's Heatseekers Albums chart in 2016
Coordinator – Jürgen Thürnau. Turn Out The Lights (LP, Album). DJM Records (2). 503502.
On Turn Out the Lights, Baker reckons with the ghosts that follow her even into sobriety. Though the album still centers on her voice, guitar, and piano, she’s got more company this time, both in the form of additional personnel ( Sorority Noise ’s Cameron Boucher plays woodwinds on Appointments and Over, and Camille Faulkner lends strings to five tracks) and new characters in the lyrics. A direct thematic line runs from the album’s first full song, Appointments, to Claws in Your Back ’s riveting finish. On Appointments, Baker grapples with the apparent futility of her strained optimism; at the song’s coda, her multi-tracked voice sings to itself, Maybe it’s all gonna turn out alright/I know that it’s not/But I have to believe that it is/I have to believe that it is. That innate contradiction, that faith against all reasonable odds, resonates behind the chain of confessions that follows
|A||Out Of Style|
|B||Turn Out The Lights|