Anna Burch - Quit The Curse (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Anna Burch

Quit The Curse (2018)


Full disclosure: I never really appreciated the contribution of women in music as a teen growing up. In retrospect, I think Lauryn Hill was the only act I remember being absolutely blown away by. That's why it feels so good now truly understanding the magic these women make and why I've got a fond affection for the likes of Hop Along, RVIVR, War on Women, Camp Cope and Julien Baker, among the many. Anna Burch fits right in, with her soul-searing and soothing voice making her the ideal fit for a label like Polyvinyl, which has always been about substance and rarely style.

Quit The Curse, amid its warm melodies, is a deeply introspective look at one's place in a world, and more so, a world on fire -- musically subtle yet never minimal on how deep we go when considering the places we're in and the people coming and going in our lives. It takes a while to get going but Burch's vocal backdrop makes this contemplation all the more easier with her voice drawing on a la Lana del Rey ("Asking 4 a Friend", then throwing nods to Big Thief, Fiona Apple and Jewel ("In Your Dreams"), and even roughing it to create an alternative rock sound a la Tancred on "Yeah You Know". Admittedly, there's some filler material that these songs do get lost in but keep an open mind, and they'll shine on.

Burch truly as an indie/DIY presence and you can sense this in the production, played down so as to maintain its folky spirit and that sense of heart that she had starting off in dive bars in Detroit. I'm glad her sound is so uncompromising because we really need more that today. In the process, she basically admits how much she's matured with the experiences she's been through and how important it is -- which all make the record as relatable as ever. As "With You Every Day" closes things off, it's pretty clear that as much as it's a love letter to someone or some place, this album truly speaks to everyone and reminds them that self-reflection is a necessity we shouldn't ignore.