Album Review: Maura Weaver – ‘I Was Due for a Heartbreak’

4/5

With so many projects under her belt—Mixtapes, Homeless Gospel Choir, The Mimes, Direct Hit!—all of them sounding wildly different from each other, it’s understandable that the listener might not know which Maura Weaver was going to show up for the artist’s solo debut. And, surprisingly enough, I Was Due for a Heartbreak isn’t a rehash of anything that Weaver has done before in any of her other projects. Instead it’s a delicate, Midwest-style emo album with hints of indie folk and even a dash of country here and there. The result is just one more example of why Weaver’s versatility is her greatest strength as an artist.

“Ease on the Eyes” sees harmonized vocals and undistorted guitars establishing the tone of the album to come. It’s earnest, honest, and even a little bit raw in its emotion with vocals that border on twee pop. “Crush on You, Part II,” one of the early singles off the record, utilizes the keyboards in a very Midwest emo style. The lo-fi electronic beats are a nice touch, too, as they add to that twee, DIY element of the song. Then the other single, “Sunshine,” relies on vivid imagery that’s enhanced by the gorgeous finger picking of the guitar.

The album goes through a lot of emotional ups and downs, especially towards the end of the record, where songs like the country-tinged “Goner” keep up an upbeat tone but with a subtle sense of melancholy bubbling right beneath the surface. But then the title track follows that with the record’s most brutal emotional gut-punch , a tear-jerker tale of heartache. Closing track “The Confines” finishes on the logical emotional climax of the record, building up the anguish and pain from the rest of the album and releasing it all at once in a cathartic way.

There’s a lot of people who can pick up an instrument or write a song, but there’s not a lot of people who can master a lot of different styles and pull them all off equally well, and Weaver is one of those people who can. Weaver is undoubtedly one of the hardest working people in punk and indie rock, but it’s refreshing that she finally gets to put out something where she stands at the center of the project. Even with all the records Weaver has appeared on, I Was Due for a Heartbreak marks somewhat of a potential turning point for Weaver, opening up the infinite possibilities of a continued solo career or another new project outside of her typical wheelhouse, if she can even be said to have a wheelhouse. Considering how good her solo album turned out to be, she can go basically wherever she wants with her next project.

I Was Due for a Heartbreak is out today on Don Giovanni Records. Follow Maura Weaver on Instagram to keep up with future updates.

Photo courtesy of Don Giovanni Records

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