Album of the Week - Ana Roxanne - Because of a Flower
An artist who makes music within ambient and new age genres, Ana Roxanne begins her songs with warm tones inspired by particular moods, and then grows ideas from those small musical seeds. Her sonic constructions have an aura of meditation rooted in those initial drones, but they do not remain static. Quite the opposite, in fact. Her pieces are fluid - ever moving and subtly transforming. To stick with the metaphor from her new album's title, Ana Roxanne's music blooms, flowering into gorgeous creations.
Because of a Flower is Ana Roxanne's first official full-length album (though ~~~ is a noteworthy release, too) and it took five years of hard work to make. Over the seven tracks, she addresses her interwoven identities, sometimes explicitly through spoken word and field recordings, other times through subtext. As an intersex individual raised in a Filipino-American community who is a devotee to mainstream pop as well as the Deftones, Ana Roxanne's layers of self culminate in a very distinct sound. The first four songs on Flower each grow a little higher than the previous, reaching for the sun. But the final two tracks, Venus and Take the Thorn, Leave the Rose are the best. Venus opens with a monologue before washing into sparkly keyboard and Brian Wilson-style harmonies. The closing track then builds a slow bass march before shifting to a softly echoing farewell. Again, Ana Roxanne's music never seems to stay in one place - germinating, growing, and blooming. Because of a Flower is a beautiful debut and an essential listen as the year draws to a close.