DAUGHTER, NOT TO DISAPPEAR: ★★★★ 1/2
Not to Disappear is the second full length release from UK based indie-electronic & folk trio Daughter, exploring loneliness and the fragility of human connection. Unlike debut If You Leave, the sombre lyrics of Not to Disappear feels like the unforced product of organic writing processes, they are not overanalysed to convey ‘seriousness’ of the band, they just are. And what they are is an unnerving, ethereal and melodic journey that speaks to the desolation and the emotional depths of broken relationships – physically or metaphysically. The album is filled with painful yearning, unsubsidised by a ravenous anger and rage in the face of diminishing human connection. Front-woman, Elena, once again offers the powerful and sensuous vocals that we’ve come to associate with band, but in not to disappear we ascertain a certain aggressiveness lacking in prior offerings. This aggressiveness, according to Elena, was linked to her transition into self acceptance and expression, the result of free-thinking, unhampered by over-analysis.
Not to disappear is an ode to a really shitty-in-between feeling of numbness, the time when you can’t quite get a grip on anything and youre forced to constantly feel like your inability to belong could send you spiralling down into the dark underworld of depression at any moment. Festering relationships and the grimy underworld of modern dating are all touched on in tracks Numbers and New Ways, which take on a slowburning calamitous nature aided by perfectly timed pregnant pauses. Overall you sense that the anger and rage present throughout the whole album is largely directed at the wearisome nature of one sided relationships.
‘ I hate being with you, because you are never there ‘
This recurring notion speaks to the agony of putting every fibre of your being into a relationship only to have the other person unwilling to do the same. These sentiments are backed up by the albums post rock/light punk nature which frequently employs guitar rifts and drum solos largely reflective of those present in The National‘s ‘Trouble will find me’. The lyrics present across the album, particularly in Alone/ With You, convey two separate narratives; one is that of despair & loneliness; the other is of understanding and acceptance. The growth of the album sees the singer take on the empowering decision of rebuilding and gravitating towards self love and acceptance. She’s discovering her identity, refusing to be defined by others.
‘I don’t want to belong/ to you or anyone’
Concluding song, Made of Stone, speaks to the emotionally disjointed experiences that have influenced the writers resulting person, she refuses to dismiss them and their impacts on her life. They have shaped her and she is wizened and a little more hardened because of them but she acknowledges her growth due to them.
‘ I think we are all/ built out of memories’.
TOP PICKS: ‘Alone/With You’ , ‘Fossa’ , ‘Doing the Right Thing’ , ‘ Numbers’.