Review: Lauren Tosswill – My Home in the Year (Enmossed, Jan 31)

There’s an almost uncomfortable tactility to My Home in the Year. In the monstrous opening title track, heavy metal objects are dragged and feet clunk on hardwood floors, juxtaposed with heavily manipulated loops of Tosswill’s spellbinding voice. The sounds are never fully unveil their identities, yet are present enough that the listener can fully explore them. This balance is key to the album’s amazing composition, with the unique timbres evoking a variety of emotions as they build in volume and interlock with each other, always hiding just behind a shield of enigma. Even the vocal elements are mysterious despite their origin being known. Tosswill’s wordless scrapes, grating inhales, and Yoshida-esque oscillations introduce incredible textures, allowing for an entirely a cappella track like “Kes” to be equally as captivating as any of the others. Despite making use of a relatively sparse sonic palette, My Home in the Year is impossibly lush; on the album page, it’s explained as residing “beyond the eye’s eye to our depths,” and somehow that arcane description kind of makes sense. Don’t ask me why, just listen.

In addition, Ms. Tosswill did a fascinating interview about her work with ATTN:Magazine. Also, all proceeds from Bandcamp sales of My Home in the Year go to Maine Inside Out, a nonprofit that works with incarcerated individuals to put on theatre productions.