Album Review: “Beautifully Broken” by Plumb

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It’s crazy to think that it’s been roughly three years since singer Plumb released her album Exhale. Now she has a new album called “Beautifully Broken” and I’ve been really excited to hear it, because every once in a while I need something that’s lighthearted and her music is my go-to on those rough days. It all started when she released her album “Need You Now” in 2013, I just love that album so much! They make me feel calm and some even make me happy surprisingly too! So whenever she announces she’s putting out new music, I instantly get excited for it.

We start with the title track “Beautifully Broken” and funny story, when this song and it’s EP came out, I was going to review just that, and I had the whole beginning written up, and then I found out that the whole thing was only the original and four remix versions of that song. So, long story short, I scrapped that post and now I’m thankful I get to talk about the song officially! I really love the playful but gentle piano introduction. She speaks a lot about God in her music, but sometimes it’s not as “out there” as other songs, and I like the fact it’s a neutral in that aspect. I found this, while I was having a rough week and I’ve loved it ever since! Next, we have “Impossible” and this is a lively little track. So loving and fun at the same time! Third is “Crazy About You” and it has an interesting beginning, it’s soft and slow, but you have a standard light, pop beat. I was swaying while listening to it, so that was cool! I really like this, it’s kind of quirky and doesn’t sound anything she’s done in a while.

“I Can Do This” and we have another different vibe going on, but I like the lyrics. They’re relatable to people that suffer from various aliments. I think it’s a very positive, motivational song for anyone who needs it. What I think it is cool though, is that the beat mimics the feeling of the words she’s saying, it’s farce but quiet at the same time. It builds into the moment where you feel like you can say those words “I can do this” too! Really good song! The sixth track is “Somebody Loves You” and the first thing that popped into my head was this may or may not make me cry. It rarely happens, but like I’ve said above, I’ve had having some difficult days lately so a certain beat can instantly turn on the waterworks! I like the fact the beat is secondary, the lyrics are loud and clear and you can see the story of this woman in your head. You don’t need a music video or anything, the words are there. It’s very bittersweet, because even the lyrics themselves are somewhat dark, you feel like she’s speaking directly to you, and saying somebody loves you. To have two songs with similar messages back-to-back is very nice. Why can’t everybody do that too?

 I think she released this song at the beginning of the year, but it’s called “God Help Me” and I’m not very religious, but I do believe in a higher power and of course I pay at night or in the middle of the day, when somebody needs it for emergencies.  I like it, but I don’t love it because of my own reasons. I do enjoy the lyrics and the string section throughout the whole song, so that’s a plus! We move on to “I’m Not Alone” and it has this whimsical/dream vibe going on, I thought it would be only at the introduction but it just continued on. It’s good though! It’s kind of short though, I wanted it to be a little longer! Next there’s “Human” and the lyrics are pretty, but the sound itself is louder, but I don’t exactly hate it for being that way. It definitely has more an alternative rock sound to it.

These are the last three songs of the album, starting with “Fight For You” and we’re back on the playful train. This is such a fun little beat. I instantly had different summertime pictures pop into my head while listening to it, which is weird because it’s not that kind of song, but the beat created those images in my head. The lyrics are so catchy, they’re also caring and sweet. I really enjoy the ukulele outro with Tiffany singing the chorus with just that sound. It just made that summer feeling real for me! “Acrobat” is next and this has a pop oriented sound, but I like the imagery with this one. It’s a nice song to casually listen to. Lastly, we have “Sleepwalking” and I like the fact that this is so slow. I like the soft quality of it, with the piano and violins towards the second verse. It’s just so beautiful!

I really liked this album. I know it’s not very smart to compare albums with each other, but I actually didn’t really like E that much. I think, maybe because I knew it would be more of a Christian music type of album, then a casual alternative pop-rock collection of songs. So to me, this has more of what I liked about NYN and maybe I’ll want to go back to it now and again to re-listen to certain songs, I mean to me, that’s kind of the whole goal to an album.

Have you listened to Plumb’s new record yet? What were your thoughts about it?

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Album Review: “Exhale” by Plumb

My plan was to do three album reviews from last month, but I was only happy with one album in May. I had high hopes for them all but I’ve gotten very picky with my music again. I’m very happy that back in 2012 I found Plumb and her then brand new album “Need You Now” because that was what I needed at the time. She recently released her album “Exhale” and this was different for me, genre wise because I don’t normally listen to worship music on a daily basis. It’s usually the other way around! Every once in a while though, everybody needs a good break for their normal routine.

I found out she was working on new music I think late 2013 when she posted a picture of her at the keyboard and she captioned it that she was writing a song about her daughter Clementine. That instantly brought out the aws and yays from me! When I looked at the track list on Facebook I was taken back about it being more about God and religion. I’m not afraid to listen to Christian music, I mean I’ll listen to Skillet, Flyleaf, and Fireflight all the time. I think with those bands, as much as their open about talking about God in their lyrics. Sometimes a person can listen to a song and not know what it’s about and you can intercept it in any way you want. I didn’t hear a lot of religious messages in her last album. It was more about finding the love again I think. This one has a different direction but it’s not so bad. I was still pretty pumped to listen to it and it still has a great sound and to me, that’s all that matters! Before I go on ahead with this review I think I should say that I do believe in God and I’m interested in different religions, but I don’t like to be preached about God and I think that’s why I’ve never liked worship/gospel music so much. I hope you understand. Now that I’ve said that we can go and start this!

The first song is the title track called “Exhale” and before she really announced she was releasing a new album, she kept posting pictures to promo this song and others and she kept hashtagging this word. I just thought she was using it like an affirmation! I’m slow at times if you didn’t know that by now! I really like this one. I really want to learn the words to this song really bad! The next is called, “Lord I’m Ready Now” and this was the song that kind of made me “worry” while I saw that track list for the first time. I like the message behind this song because we’ve all had times when we’re ready to give up and we tend to forget we have nobody on our side. We do have though, God is on our side! He’s always there for us when we need to talk to somebody or to be guided somewhere. I didn’t like “Smoke” as much as I do now. I don’t know why because I think the sound is just beautiful!

This was a word that she kept hashtaging on her Facebook, I saw a video for it which made me excited but I never got to watch it! I must’ve been very distracted that week! The song is called “Resurrection” and even though it has elements that I should like, it’s not one of my favorites at the moment. The fifth song is called “Great Is Our God” and this is another favorite of mine. When the album first came out, I only got to this song and stopped listening to it altogether. I think I might’ve been afraid to listen to them out loud without my headphones because I’ve been teased once while listening to Flyleaf and their religious based songs, so I’ve been known to wait to listen to these types of songs at night. However, if I’m at my lowest sometimes these types of songs make me cry (in a good way) and I generally feel better afterwards. Okay, next song is “True Love” and I like the little playful beat and the opening of using a fairy tale beginning just adds the “cuteness” of it. It’s very poppy but it’s good!  I really like lullaby/music box feel that the next song brings. It’s called “Broken Places” and the only way I can describe the words “music box” is like a light, gentle tune. Tiffany’s voice brings out that powerful sound it needs!

We’re almost done from the standard version. The next song is called “Faithful” and it’s another song that I feel like I should like, because I can hear a piano and Tiffany’s voice is soft, but I feel like it’s a bit dull! “Champion” starts off with this upbeat sound, it almost makes you want to start dancing or jump up and down! It would be a good song to motivate runners before or to keep going in a big run in the summertime. I really like this one!! This starts off pretty and slow, then it becomes a bit dramatic. It’s called “Sleep Would Be Sweet” and I think it’s safe to say that this will become another favorite of mine! I would like to see a lyrical/contemporary dance out of this song! I think it would be a beautiful way to make this song come alive! That’s just my opinion! The last two songs of the album: “When You Walk Into The Room” and I thought this one would be about her husband or her kids, but I can see it being about God too. I like the sound of it, not too much to say about the words though. And the last one is called “Restored” and it’s very airy in the beginning, you can sway back and forth to it. I love the message behind this song too. What you think of the word “restored” is what the song is about and that’s a good way to end anything, especially an album.

I don’t know why I was so worried about this, it’s actually really great!! I don’t like only two songs out of twelven. That’s a new record for me I think! You’re honestly not going to like a whole album off the bat. I’ve never done it that’s for sure! I would rate this as a 9/10 and that’s my honest opinion. It really surprised me of how good it was but you can’t hate on Plumb’s music. If you’ve listened to the album, what are your favorite tracks off of it?

Tune Tuesday: Plumb

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Week two and it’s all about Plumb.

Tiffany is her real name, but she goes by her stage name Plumb on social media sites. I mostly follow her on Facebook through her fan page that she runs. She is a Hoosier like moi. This woman has been at it for a long time now. I’ve just recently gotten into her music. There was an episode of The Vampire Diaries were they played her song, “Cut” during a sad scene on the show. I always get this song confused with The Civil Wars’ song “Poison & Wine” because both songs were highlights in the scenes, but I have no clue which scene in my head went with her song. All I know is it was played on the show, I loved it, and bought it within a few days after hearing it.

Plumb makes alternative rock, commentary Christian, and electronic music. It’s a strange mix, but nothing new to me. I’ve tried to get into her earlier works, but I haven’t been able to mesh with any other songs. In 2013, she released a new album called, Need You Now and I was obsessed with it! Just before it came out, I had only been following her on FB for a few months. I remember patiently waiting for my Spotify to load up all new tracks of the week her first single, “Need You Now (How Many Times)” and instantly buying it on iTunes a couple of days later. It took me some time to get me into her second single, “Drifting” but I did listen to the whole album. It’s one that’s perfect for a rainy day or when you’re down for no general reason at all. The album inspired a big playlist of mine on my Spotify account. It’s called the “mellow” playlist. It’s got every song from artists that have calm, slow upbeat songs for those low moods. It was made in 2013 and it now has almost 700 songs in it! It’s insane of many songs I’ve managed to put in it!

My favorite Plumb songs are “In My Arms,” “Don’t Deserve You,” “I Want You Here,” and “Chocolate & Ice Cream.” That last one makes me so happy! Such a lovable and dance-y song! She’s one of those musicians that likes to take her time in creating and releasing new music. So who knows when we’ll get new music from her, but she could surprise us in later months.

Feels Good At First

d24aa33fc62f7e292341b88f8088605eFor us in the Midwest, we are familiar with the seasons spring, summer, and fall as these three tend to collide together in one BIG season that lasts longer than winter. Seriously! We usually never get a long enough spring of sweet, innocent weather until it switches to blitzering hot that you don’t want to go outside for a long period of time and even though it says “fall” on your calendar, you never take it seriously because it could still be hot as hell or winter could be coming early instead. My birthday is in November and it’s has felt like summer, fall and winter before. It’s a very interesting concept but after spending your life in one place, as much as your heart and soul wants to travel, this is where you belong. This is comfort zone.

I’ve found out that birds do sing in the winter. I remember in school, students and teachers used to say that the birds fly south for the winter. Unless I was hearing crows all winter long, I don’t think that’s all true. I’ve heard birds chirpping outside my window. My favorite time to see birds is in the late autumn, because they’re trying to find food and they go in packs like wolves flying around together in the blue sky, moving with the wind like a flag would. There are so many of them that they take up so much space on the bare trees and cornfields. I think falling in love with the season of fall the most has made me love of trees without their leaves. I love it when they change colors, but a bare tree looks so beautiful when the sun touches it. When a storm comes through, the leaves are not there to protect the small branches and the strong wind and lightning can make an old and wise tree crumble into the ground. I would rather see a tree that a storm destroyed than some man-made machine cut it down. When we were getting the new highway and the first time we took it, I felt so depressed as the trees that were there and the history and years they grew there, just made me sad.

I wasn’t trying to make this depressing, I actually wanted to talk about the good of spring and all of her sister seasons. Spring makes a sad person come out of the dark side and smile again. I know, because I’ve seen it before. The sun comes out and the cool breeze coats the body in love again that the harsh cold burns. Spring brings out the sweet music too. I love to listen to mellow, soft rock and pop music in the winter to get me ready for spring. Train is a good band to get you ready for spring. They’re not heavy, the way I’m used to, but their soft lyrics of love, sorrow, and happiness hugs you tightly. In the last thirty minutes I’ve been listening to Plumb’s album “Need You Now” to keep me in the borderline of happy and sad. I’m not necessarily sad, I’m trying feeling down. The sun is out though, so I’ve been trying to think on the positives of the day. Because I know the rain and storms could come back sooner than you think. I hope you enjoy your day, whether it’s sunny and storming. There are so many reasons to be happy, even if it’s only for a little white. I’ve decided to include a playlist of Plumb’s album, because the only you’ll understand the way I’m feeling is if you felt it too. So just give it a chance. My favorite songs on the album are, “Invisible,” “Drifting,” “I Want You Here,” “Need You Now (How Many Times),” “Chocolate & Ice Cream,” and “Don’t Deserve You.”