Opening with her raw and honest poetry, Cigarette Smoke sets the mood of the Melbourne arts scene and an artist who is finding themselves. I’ll Get There depicts the uncertainty and fear of moving away from home and family, and finding your feet in your early twenties in a new city. With lines such as “Freedom was her main concern, independence was strength she had learned”, the listener goes on Maja’s journey of growing up, learning to accept yourself and become an autonomous individual. In A Better Woman and Mother’s Daughter, discusses her family issues and affirms “I am learning to accept myself as I am; I am learning to be a better woman.” He Wants to Know You influenced by Bill Withers explores self ownership of oneself with lines such as “I am finally learning to speak my mind so that he won’t ever treat me that unkind” and “love is not a winning game and I am not a prize to claim.” The album is deftly underscored with smooth orchestral backings, holy-sounding choir parts and heavenly melodies. It highlights the freedom of unpredictability and the potential change yourself – a timeless and beautiful thing.
Although it may explore some darker, painful topics, Still Bleeding carries a subtle positive resonance that attunes to Maja’s real-world sprightly personality which filters through the upbeat arrangements. Strangers is heavily influenced by Maja’s classical training, while other tracks such as the pop-like Wake Up and Find sway towards soulful influence like Lesley Core and the Supremes.
Through her exploration of styles, Maja traverses a range of depths and colours, transitioning seamlessly between light and dark tracks. Commencing with The Dreamer, it moves from a light-hearted, upbeat track to Faith No More, a more introspective pensive track. Her writing is deeply-personal and relatable and is further exemplified through Animosity, displaying a maturity far beyond Maja’s age. “Ecstatic, empty, all this same; this manic life is something you can’t tame. I’m well acquainted with your kind, where you eyes wander and your mind is blind,” is an example of this. The single, Treat Me Right is a stand-alone track, combining the doo-wop harmonies of the early 60’s with driving piano rhythms. The EP concludes with Imperfections, a track that blends lush string arrangements with a soulful rhythm section to create an energetic finale.
HARD COPY PURCHASES
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