A transparent journey of falling in love, heartbreak, and self-healing...

On Friday (February 5th) Hayley Williams dropped the sublimely honest, surprise release, 'FLOWERS for VASES / descansos'.

In May 2020 she released her EP 'Petals For Armor' – a taster of what her solo work would encounter. Following the theme of delicate vocals, intricate breakups and hallow acoustics; 'FLOWERS for VASES / descansos' exudes all of the above and more in fourteen stunning tracks.

Shimmering opener, ‘First Thing To Go,’ is ironically quite telling of what the album entails, depicting where the following emotions stem from. Following is humble third track, ‘Asystole,’ – a delicate, almost dreamlike lullaby. From here onwards, Williams’s nonchalant vocals and guitar playing intertwine like an inseparable unit. As you make your way through the tracklist, she guides you through an emotive journey of love through to loss.

'FLOWERS for VASES / descansos' is an open book to Williams’s psyche, the theme of falling in love, and whirling through the pain of heartache is weaved throughout yet told so explicitly different as each track arrives. If you weren’t already in love with her, you are now.

Self-wrote and played entirely by herself, 'FLOWERS for VASES / descansos' gives you all Williams has to offer on a silver plate. Recorded during the first lockdown in the comfort of her home, it’s incredible to think Williams’s was already onto her second project moments after dropping 'Petals For Armor'.

Concluding with indie-folk tale, ‘Just a Lover,’ Williams wraps up this perfect album with a minimalistic approach – the detail is soft, yet crisp. In 'FLOWERS for VASES / descansos' Williams belts the stapled vocal range she’s praised for in notable tracks, ‘All I Wanted,’ ‘Feeling Sorry,’ and ‘Ain’t It Fun,’ and completes it with comforting acoustics, simplistic key work and alluring songwriting.

8/10

Words: Laviea Thomas

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