Carving Canyons belongs to a specific class of albums: singer/songwriters who processed personal grief through the prism of the COVID-19 pandemic. Lissie's loss wasn't due to illness, it was the dissolution of a romantic relationship, a breakup that colored her view of a world turned upside down. Reuniting with producer Curt Schneider, who previously helmed her 2018 album Castles, Lissie works in a similarly mellow territory, draping electronics, echoes, harmonies, and other effects on songs that could withstand being stripped to their absolute basics. She doesn't mince words: there are tracks called "Sad," "Lonesome Wine," and "I Hate This" here, songs that deliver upon their titular promises. Occasionally, the singer/songwriter consciously injects her ruminative gloss with a distinct pulse -- "Night Moves" is prime Stevie Nicks circa Bella Donna -- but this is a record of quiet reflection that ends on a hopeful note, suggesting that the low fog of loneliness is bound to eventually drift away.
Carving Canyons Review
by Stephen Thomas Erlewine