Today, following the success of her 2019 debut self-titled album, Swedish native singer-songwriter Lotta Lindgren aka LÉON releases her sophomore studio album Apart. With a soft contemporary pop sound; since her debut release back in 2015, she has been steadily developing a strong following and captivating listeners with her emotive and gentle pop songs. And marking her most candid and vulnerable release to date is her brand new record Apart. Delving into the emotions and feelings that surface after a painful breakup, this album serves as a cathartic post-break up release.
Dealing with the pains of a breakup amidst the busyness of tour; when arriving back home, that was when those feelings of grief and isolation came crashing down. “When I came home I started to process that I had left a relationship,” LÉON explains. “I just spiralled out into many emotions and I felt so alone. I didn’t feel sorry for myself, but it was a very real feeling being alone for the first time. I’d been writing songs about being left or being a victim in the past, but now I felt I was on the other side. I had to really look within myself and see all these flaws. It was a reality check on myself and my own behaviour”. And it was out of this, and the raw emotion, that inspiration manifested itself in the form of this stunning record. Written and recorded over six months during the pandemic, she teamed up with her long-time friend and producer Martin Stilling to harness their creativity and immerse themselves in the creative process.
Kicking off the record, and setting the scene for the album is, Head and Heart On Fire. One of the pre-released tracks off of the record, the emotive ballad captivates you from the very first note. Opening with an acoustic guitar instrumental; the song draws on gentle indie-folk pop melodies and a stripped back instrumentation, that perfectly compliments LÉON’s emotive and subdued vocals. With poignant and heartfelt lyricism, the song details that memory of meeting someone for the first time who it feels like you’ve known forever. And talking about the track, LÉON notes “It’s kind of like looking at an old photograph. You wish you could have stayed there, before things got hard”. Following this up is another beautiful and emotive ballad – And It Breaks My Heart. Another pre-released track, the song is intro’d by a vibrant and grand cinematic orchestral instrumental, that is interspersed with a powerful pop-beat. With personal and candid lyricism, the dynamic anthem was one of the first tracks to emerge; stemming from a dinner LÉON had with her ex following their break-up, and delves into the reasons behind the split.
Switching up the tempo, we then have Crazy/Stupid delivering a more up-beat pop song and retro-esque vibes; touching on pop sounds reminiscent of the 60s and 80s. We then get caught up in a slew of stunning and mellow instrumental led tracks, that project a more melancholic energy, as we begin to work our way through the mid-section of the album. From the introspective softness of Chasing a Feeling – that considers how to know when it’s time to end things – we move to Falling Apart – an emotionally wrought ballad, that displays LÉON’s strong yet vulnerable vocals against a backdrop of a glimmering piano melody.
As we head into the later half of the album, LÉON showcases her eclectic and diverse artistry as we see new generic elements emerge onto the sonic landscape. From a steady guitar bassline that subtly alludes toward rock on Who You Lovin, to the atmospheric synths that feature heavily on Seventeen; this adds to, and illustrates, the changing and varied emotions LÉON is feeling as she takes us on this sonic journey. Bringing us ever deeper into her world. And as the album draws to a close, we have the impassioned track Die For You, before slowing things down for the last song – and title track – Apart. A final lament of the ended relationship, the track is one last cathartic release of all the questions and emotions over what happened, and what’s to come next. Ending the album on a positive and affirming note, LÉON still highlights that new and unclear reality, with the lyrics ‘And I finally fond myself, without you. But now I know nothing at all”.
A stunning album from top to bottom; make sure to keep up with LÉON, and all her music news, on her socials below!