Marissa Nadler – Marissa Nadler

written by: July 25, 2011
Release Date: June 14th, 2011


Marissa Nadler has credited Ed Hardy from Eclipse Records as having brought her into the music world.  Hardy is acknowledged as discovering the artist and his record label released Nadler’s first two albums: Ballads of Living and Dying and The Saga of Mayflower May. By her third and fourth albums, Songs III: Bird on the Water and Little Hell, Nadler was gaining quite the reputation for herself, receiving vibrant praise for both.

After Nadler stepped out of her own “hell,” she started her own record label, Box of Cedar Records, wherein she would release her most recent, eponymous album. Marissa Nadler begins with “In Your Lair, Bear,” a gutsy move to begin an album—the track is six minutes long. The song starts with a single guitar winding through the same chords before Nadler’s voice swoops in. Nadler showcases her ability to make her lyrics sound slurred without being sloppy. The song deals with abandonment, which seems to be a common theme on this album: “Where did you go when the snow fell that year?” Marissa Nadler is a circular album, ending with “Daisy, Where Did You Go?” another track about being left behind. This time the lonesomeness feels more personal and is related to death, “So why did they take you first and leave me too soon?” Nadler sounds more breathless, as if the song almost hurts her to sing.

Nadler’s music is classically simple and the instruments are never crowded. A strumming guitar is always at the forefront accompanied by drums or additional strings.

Being forsaken isn’t the only recurring theme on Marissa Nadler, there’s also the repetition of her leaving. “I was always packing a suitcase in the dark/In my mind a highway to the western spark” is a line from “Little King” which falls toward the end of the album. The song is a sleepy telling of wanting to run away to fall in love. Nadler is an incredibly talented songwriter, and can add a stunning line to a predictable song. In “Little King” she pens, “We can drink whiskey or sit inside the car and listen to the silence of the stars.”

Nadler has other love-related themes and not all songs are subdued. “The Sun Always Reminds Me of You” brings a tinny folk sound to the album. Nadler sings about an ex-lover whom she can’t get out of her mind. “Why does the sun always remind me of you yes it does/I hope a new day will come and cover up what I done.” This track is a bit quicker and stands above some of the predictability of the album.

Nadler recently entered a new era in her life, her 30s. She has her own record label, four full-length albums, and an incredible reputation. While Marissa Nadler is heavy-eyed it should do nothing but add to her sparkling repertoire.

Marissa Nadler – s/t Tracklist:

  1. “In Your Lair, Bear”
  2. “Alabaster Queen”
  3. “The Sun Always Reminds Me of You”
  4. “Mr. John Lee Revisited”
  5. “Baby I Will Leave You in the Morning”
  6. “Puppet Master”
  7. “Wind Up Doll”
  8. “Wedding”
  9. “Little King”
  10. “In a Magazine”
  11. “Daisy, Where Did You Go?”