Label: Full Time Hobby
Released: 25th June 2021
Ella Williams’ second album as Squirrel Flower, ‘Planet (i)’, is named after a fictional world she imagined. It’s where humans will take refuge after destroying Earth, only to inevitably repeat the process.
As she explores this new territory, Ella feels more and reaches further than last year’s ‘I Was Born Swimming’. “Trying to recall how the rain felt on my skin / And scream to anyone who’ll listen,” she echoes on ‘Flames and Flat Tires’, traversing across brittle, arid landscapes to find the water she emerged from; a search for herself and somewhere to call home.
Each track is built around a central mantra, willing the fortitude from within, her head turned towards the stars despite her body being pulled mercilessly to the dirt. Time and time again on ‘Planet (i)’, Ella picks herself up and dusts herself off, defying her own fears to stare down adversity with a hard-earned valiance — from the torturous, half-assed excuses given by manipulative partners on ‘Hurt a Fly’ to sleepless nights spent swallowed in existential dread on ‘Pass’, and her deep-rooted phobia of natural disasters.
Hurtling recklessly through the cosmos on the hunt for answers, ‘Planet (i)’ teeters on the edge of self-destruction. The atmosphere shifts and changes with no forewarning; searing guitars and thunderous wails suddenly implode to make way for sparse, lonesome recollections. Ella’s presence is, at times, accompanied by a family of collaborators — including her own father, Jesse — who act as a guiding force towards shelter. Whether she eventually finds what she’s looking for is unclear as the album fades out, but she departs with a relieving sense of tranquillity.