Joana Serrat: ‘Big Wave’ and even bigger instrumentals

Three years on since Hardcore From The Heart, Spanish singer-songwriter Joana Serrat has mastered the art of heavy-hitting songs and album titles.

‘The Cord’ sets the impression of this album right from the get-go. Starting the 43-minute LP with a dramatic introduction so commanding and domineering, the only thing you can do is pay attention to the Catalan native’s voice and ambience. The remarkable introduction doesn’t disappoint as the instrumental becomes so infectious and paired with Serrat’s wistful tone, it’s truly hypnotising.

However, all the efforts and hard work don’t just translate to the grand album opener. ‘Feathers’, the adjacent track, has the same intensity. The atmosphere of Big Wave is continued through a range of moody drums and murky effects. While Serrat sings the lyric, ‘Feathers all around you’, there’s an eye-opening moment where listeners realise there’s more than just feathers keeping you company. The instrumental whirls round in your ears like a tornado while Joana’s voice guides you through the album. Although the infamous phrase goes, “Two’s a party, three’s a crowd…”, this succeeding track breaks all traditions: ‘Feathers’ is phenomenal.

There is a remarkable shift during ‘This House’ and continued into ‘Are You Still Here?’. Much like her hometown, Vic, these two songs have a charm to them which is embodied through dreamier instrumentals and vocals of a soothing nature. In contrast to ‘Feathers’, this track run actually does feel like a weight being lifted from your shoulders. The lighter tone is also very reflective of Serrat’s past work, even though Big Wave contrasts it overall.

From start to finish, it’s hard to find any flaws within the self-written record as it follows a cohesive pattern. The dramatic nature found within the initial track is matched with a poignant and eerie finish. Much like a ship reaching the harbour, the aptly titled closing song ‘The Ocean’ winds down gradually and slowly, yet the five-minute-long number is stark and fear-inducing.

There is a pool of emotions that have been carefully selected and evenly distributed across all eleven songs by Serrat. It may have a title of grandeur but it’s still a delicate project, and the sense of unease is very fitting.

“I was feeling very uncomfortable, and I wanted the album to encapsulate this emotional state”, Joana has revealed. Indeed, she succeeded.

Big Wave perfectly describes the newest body of work from Serrat: it’s direct and bold. The record leaves a mark on you and is certainly not to be shelved. It’s meant to be the centre of attention, thoroughly listened to and eagerly loved.


Joana’s back now

Big Waves is what she’s making

Sixth Album success

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