Some of the greatest and most moving pieces of music have come in the wake of tragedy. Washington based songwriter Phil Elverum began Mount Eerie as a solo project in 2003, and nearly a decade and a half later, Phil is still dedicated to the project, releasing the eighth studio album of his storied discography. Earlier this year, ‘A Crow Looked At Me’ shook critics and fans alike, it set a new bar for how music can connect with its listeners. All in the wake of the most traumatic event of Elverum’s life.
‘A Crow Looked at Me’ is a concept album that ponders and reflects on the death of Phil Elverum’s wife, Geneviève. Facing emotionally tearing obstacles involving his wife’s passing, Phil shows us his heartwrenching and honest perspective on facing death while reflecting on life without her. A Crow Looked at Me is an immaculate processing of the emotions Phil went through and is conveyed beautifully with acoustic and often skeletal background atmospheres. Phil’s ability to weave metaphors into a narrative that is painstakingly real garners my respect to a great degree.
‘Real Death’ was the first single to the album, and woefully throws a wave of sorrow over the listeners. The track, ‘Ravens’ is a song about memory and trauma, and the way they change in the wake of unthinkable sadness, something relatable throughout the rest of the project. A Crow Looked at Me is truly one of the most touching albums I know and is a contender for one of the best albums of the year.