In the spring of 2016, with only a guitar and backpack in hand, English singer/songwriter Lucy Rose embarked on a two-month tour of Latin America. Partly organized by fans who provided lodging, she not only wrote her third studio album, Something's Changing, on the trip, but captured key moments of the experience on video for a companion documentary short. When it came time to record the resulting songs back in England, she did so at producer Tim Bidwell's home studio with a certain intimacy and group performances in mind, and included guests such as Elena Tonra of Daughter, Marcus Hamblett of Bear's Den, and the Staves. The latter provided backing vocals on two tracks, including "Is This Called Home," a mini-drama that moves through time signatures as it grows from quiet contemplation with electric guitar, to a delicate waltz joined by bass and drums, and finally to a brighter, fully arranged chamber piece with added strings and singers as Rose repeats "Let me hold your hand." Fans of her debut may be happy to hear that the song, which follows a harp-accompanied introduction, signals a return to an intimate, more acoustic palette after her diversion into poppier electronics on 2015's Work It Out. Later in the track sequence, the jazzier "Second Chance" evokes Carole King in its more reflective, piano-based verses, and, named for the three Greek gods also known as the Fates, "Moirai" is an acoustic reflection on a lost love. A diverse set that touches on baroque pop, country, jazz, and especially '70s singer/songwriters, its quiet demeanor both sidesteps dullness and suits Rose's poignant vocal delivery, which tends to excel at restrained volumes. With songcraft and performances on point here, Something's Changing is Rose's most exquisite album to date and her most moving ("It's just a song, but without it, would I have told you this?").
AllMusic Review by Marcy Donelson