Whitney – Forever Turned Around

What it lacks in bangers, it makes up for in beauty.
Label: Secretly Canadian
Released: 30th August 2019
Rating: ★★★★

Sometimes an album comes along that you can only imagine existing in the summertime and so it is with ‘Forever Turned Around’, the second record from Chicago’s Whitney. Seeming to drift in on a gentle breeze, it boasts some of the warmest and richest production you’ll hear all year. But hidden beneath the lazy afternoon vibes are colder reflections from a band who appear to be hearing the silent ticking of a clock as the years pass by. With themes of time moving on and fears of letting go, there is an almost sombre tone to many of these tracks that is hidden just out of sight. Matched with a beach campfire vibe, it makes for a delicious mix.

Leaning more into a seventies-influenced style of smooth rock, Julien Ehrlich’s vocals are so lush and gorgeous they should come with a warning. With some sweet, and deceptively intricate, guitar solos trickling through, this is an album that does the neat trick of being perfect music to wash over the listener while equally containing enough depth to keep swimming in for a while. Standout track ‘Day & Night’ is the perfect case in point, the sweetest of harmonies temporarily masking a lyrical pain (“Now and then I remember, there’s an end in sight.”)

That mix is what gives the record a longevity and purpose, far beyond its easy-going vibe would suggest. ‘Forever Turned Around’ may not be a record that will quicken any pulses but what it lacks in bangers, it makes up for in beauty. Autumn may seem to be approaching in the world of Whitney, but in the meantime, this will give some of the most blissful moments of this or any other summer.

Jamie MacMillan

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