Big Thief is a band made for the indie-rock genre. After their sophomore album, Capacity, explored the intricacy of family trauma, their latest LP, U.F.O.F., delves into stories of intimacy and vivid imagery.
Frontwoman Adrianne Lenker proves herself as a brilliant mind, making listeners want to wax poetic about the colors in the sky and extreme mundane tasks that conquer a routine day. The LP stumbles upon Earth’s biggest questions—life, love, heartbreak, and discovery. Immersive but subtle, U.F.O.F. allows a range of emotions to overflow one’s mind.
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Today we share UFOF. We are so so proud of this thing and so grateful to those who helped make it happen. Andrew Sarlo and Dom Monks – your energy and expertise and unparalleled studio prowess were invaluable. Ed and our @4ad fam- thanks for putting this thing out! Taylor, Carson, Jeremy, kenna, Zoë, Tom — thank you, thank you – you know what you did! This thing was recorded and mixed in 3 weeks at @bearcreekstudio. Lots of love, Big Thief. Cover photo by Dustin Condren. Album art by Sarah Schiesser.
Lenker whispers her mind-bending lyrics, articulating a whole new world for us to see. “Cattails” stands out the most, showcasing a perfect indie-folk track, rivaling even the most classic hits. Lenker conveys desperation, making us yearn for nature and the vast open road. It’s a track for long road trips alone, leaving the driver to contemplate life’s most difficult hurdles.
“Orange” further digs into vulnerability—Lenker practically chants, “lies, lies, lies in her eyes.” Lenker is fragile and soft, revealing a sense of awareness that she isn’t indestructible. It’s stripped down and less produced than the other tracks featured on the album, gracing it with an elegance that allows uniqueness. Eventually, it transitions to the soulful “Century,” adding more strings and Lenker’s signature whispery tone.
However, “Jenni” shifts the album down a path of utter haunting proportions. With booming guitar notes and slow-jam vibrations, it unveils a world hard to comprehend. We enter a nightclub filled with lost souls, an empty subway station, or a vacant street, pondering our purpose. It catapults us into a deep fantasy but also a striking reality.
Big Thief is able to teleport each listener into a past experience. Their authenticity delivers a different kind of music—one not many can achieve. U.F.O.F. weaves a story of true meaning—it’s unfairly gorgeous and written with care. The Brooklyn-based band’s genuine lyrics and sound make them a powerful staple group in the raging enigma that is the indie-folk community.
Stream Big Thief’s third album U.F.O.F here.
Featured image source: 4AD