Jennifer Silva – Purgatory Road (2021)

Most well-known for her intoxicating performances, US-based singer-songwriter Jennifer Silva has a way of captivating her audience from the first note. Channelling the aura of Florence Welch, the power of Aretha Franklin and the intimacy of Tori Amos, this songstress is unique in the indie-rock scene. Having collaborated with producer Reed Black, Leesta Vall Sound and featured in a documentary photography project by Abby Moskowitz, Silva has her finger in several pies. One of the more recent additions to her critically acclaimed discography is ‘Purgatory Road’.

The title track from her highly anticipated album, ‘Purgatory Road’ has an intensely evocative and haunting sound. Finding the midway between Florence Welch and Amy Winehouse, Silva effortlessly grabs your attention with her vocals and not by listening alone. No, along with the sweet voice, she tugs at your heartstrings while filling your soul with sonic beauty. Elegant and exhilarating, her dulcet tones toss you into a bubble of sound filled with sweet perfume and a hazy ambience – and that’s just her vocals. What of the melody and lyricism?

A well-crafted melodic arrangement combines steady drums, smooth guitars and acoustic piano creating a powerful song from beginning to end. While all instrumentation can be heard, ‘Purgatory Road’ is primarily a piano-driven track leaning toward a strong blues meets soul sound. The slight crescendo to catchy guitar riffs with an infectious chorus question if Silva is exploring an organic meets synthetic aspect here. Perhaps coming through electric and acoustic is part of heading down to purgatory; then again, Purgatory Road is a real place, and this might just be me over-analysing.

Jennifer Silva shares that ‘Purgatory Road’ is “…a metaphor for how we deal with past transgressions and the search for forgiveness” – a message that is exquisitely exposed in the poetic lyricism. Penned before the pandemic, ‘Purgatory Road’ has a sense of melancholic nostalgia as Silva reflects on the difficult time people have had over the past year and a half. She evokes feelings of melancholy, despair, turmoil and conflict with the provocative material; however, the single does have a sense of hopefulness as Silva takes your hand and shows you the light at the end of the tunnel.

For more from Jennifer Silva, check out her official website, Facebook, Instagram and Spotify.

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