Ever since I came upon the honest music and haunting vocals of Canadian singer-songwriter Ché Aimee Dorval, I’ve anxiously awaited the chance to hear new solo music from her beyond her album Underachiever and her EP Volume One.  News of an album in the works has been trickling in for months now, but it was two weeks ago that definitive information was released: Her second full-length album, Between The Walls And The Window, will come out on December 8th, and will feature the lead single “Buried,” which was released with this announcement.

When an artist I love releases a lead single from an upcoming album, I mentally remind myself that lead singles aren’t always indicative of an album as a whole; I look at many of my favorite albums, and while lead singles are often excellent, sometimes they’re just not my cup of tea, and I don’t want to pre-emptively judge an entire album based on such a faulty criterion.

But such a bracing was in no way required with “Buried”; I immediately fell in love with Dorval’s latest song, a heartbreaking piece about feeling powerless in a world that drowns you out, while uncaring, unsympathetic actions thwart your efforts to fight back.  Soft, atmospheric electric guitar echoes from the start, setting the tone for the mellow, reflective ballad.

Dorval’s voice was what drew me to her music initially, and if anything, “Buried” ups the ante in that respect.  She begins carefully, her voice soothing as it hits lower notes, but as the song draws to a close, she climbs up to hit spine-chillingly beautiful high notes among melismas and vocalizations, gentle acoustic guitar a subtle backing as she cries out.

Although I warned myself not to let a negative impression of the lead single tarnish my expectations for the full album, I’m having a hard time applying the same logic about Between The Walls And The Window with “Buried” currently standing as one of my absolute favorite songs that Dorval has released.  I look forward to finding out if my optimism is warranted (as I imagine it will be) on December 8th; for now, join me in listening to this gorgeous composition on repeat.

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