Ameican singer-songwriter Angel Olsen has given us a brand new single from her upcoming sixth studio album Big Time, the slow-burning ‘Through the Fires’.
“’Through The Fires’ is the centrepiece statement of this record,” Olsen shares. “It’s a song I wrote to remind myself that this life is temporary, the past is not something to dwell on, that it’s important to keep moving, keep searching for the people that are also searching, and to notice the moments that are lighter and bigger than whatever trouble I’ve encountered.”
In the grand narrative of Big Time, ‘Through the Fires’ is the penultimate track that lands just before the melancholy and contemplative piano-heavy closer ‘Chasing the Sun’. ‘Through the Fires’ isn’t so much a climax as a logical summation of everything that came before it – all the guilt, regret, and inability to understand the world that runs through Big Time is quietly exorcised on ‘Through the Fires’.
Olsen always sounds like she’s right on the verge of going full-on explosive, but even when the arrangement opens up to include drums, strings, and guitars, things never get truly overwhelming. There’s something remarkably bittersweet about ‘Through the Fires’, and even though Olsen says she’s letting go of the pain, it’s clear that this particular form of emotional release hasn’t come easily.
When put into context with the rest of Big Time, ‘Through the Fires’ will likely have a much stronger impact than it does as a standalone single. Still, as a one-off, it’s a beautifully stirring song that completes Olsen’s return to more pastoral and folky origins. Anyone who likes any of Olsen’s previous material should be excited for Big Time, but then again, anyone who likes good music should probably be excited for Big Time as well.
Check out the video for ‘Through the Fires’ down below. Big Time is set for a June 3rd release.