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Revisit a rare version of Angel Olsen song 'Lonely Universe'


Angel Olsen’s voice is already enough to give you chills. That factor, paired with her haunting music and songwriting, goes above and beyond in terms of musical prowess and unique style. Even though a part of her charm is the rustic, western-inspired twang, there’s plenty to prove that even super stripped-down, Olsen’s voice work still carries that same sweetness.

Angel Olsen‘s song ‘Lonely Universe’ is one of the standouts of her 2012 album Half Way Home, and it has a quintessential Olsen flair that cements itself within her discography. There are elements of surf rock about the guitar, but it also carries the basic indie darkness that allows her willowy voice to stand out.

However, what would happen if this song lost its slowed-down clarity? Well, that’s exactly what can be found on the rare version of the song, which was recorded in an entirely different style. The guitar strumming is quicker, and a little less stylised. If the album version is one for a lone-star saloon, the rare version is a campfire song. 

Olsen’s voice still brings a sense of chilling clarity, especially as the middle of the chorus swells. But given the grainy quality, her voice even threatens to blast out the speakers at one point, slipping into a chippy, shaking discomfort. However, all of this makes it a little more human.

Even if this doesn’t become the version you return to time and time again, it’s an interesting contrast from the original song, and definitely enough to be worth the listen. It has a bit more of a bedroom pop air to it, which isn’t quite as common for Olsen, but listening to her give it a try even before it blew up as big as it is now can be intriguing, to say the least.

If one thing’s for certain, Angel Olsen has a versatile, haunting voice that keeps drawing you back in for more. This song came out in 2012 and holds no threat of losing its appeal, no matter the form it comes in.

If you want to hear Angel Olsen’s rare version of her song ‘Lonely Universe’, you can take a listen down below.