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Dress up your playlist with some new songs: Faye Webster’s “Underdressed at the Symphony” Review

“Underdressed at the Symphony” album cover.
“Underdressed at the Symphony” album cover.

Faye Webster, a popular alternative indie music artist, recently released her fifth studio album through her record label Secretly Canadian, “Underdressed at the Symphony.”

After a three-year absence from the singer after her 2021 album “I Know I’m Funny Haha,” Webster returns with an eclectic new album featuring genres ranging from indie rock and R&B to country. Webster also continued a trend set by her last three albums, collaborating with an artist for one song off of her album, this time with her long-time friend Lil Yachty in their song “Lego Ring.”

Webster released four singles, “But Not Kiss,” “Lifetime,” “Lego Ring (feat. Lil Yachty)” and “Feeling Good Today,” before finally releasing the full album. I have been a fan of Webster since the release of her 2019 album “Atlanta Millionaires Club.” After waiting for the last three years, you can imagine my surprise when I suddenly saw her release “But Not Kiss.” Finally, I thought. Faye Webster was back.

“Underdressed at the Symphony” consists of 10 songs and functions as Webster’s ode to relationship cycles: focusing on the loneliness that comes with it.

“But Not Kiss,” the second song off the album, was the first single released ahead of time. The song starts off with Webster’s soft, sentimental vocals as she describes what she misses and longs for after a breakup. The drums and bass build as the verse goes on only to completely cut off right before the next verse, almost like she is going in circles, moving only to end up back at the beginning. Each verse ends with a catchy string of “yeah(s)” that I couldn’t get out of my head. “But Not Kiss” provided a perfect mix of Webster’s whispery almost lazy vocals and her lovable indie rock sound.

The fourth song off the album, “Lego Ring (feat. Lil Yachty),” was released as a single as well. This was one of the few songs off the album that never grew on me. The addition of the neo-psychedelia sound with Webster’s traditional indie rock sound was a little too much for me. “Lego Ring” is definitely an experimental track with its shifting melody and chaotic tempo. Lil Yachty’s backing vocals remind me of an alien underwater, and the three songs in one approach just didn’t work for me. When Lil Yachty’s verse finally came, the effects on his voice brought a distinct frown to my face. Listening to this song made me realize that I greatly prefer the chill, more jazzy Webster sound.

The ninth song off the album, and the album’s namesake, is “Underdressed at the Symphony.” This song is that Webster style I was waiting for. Webster brings everything to the table. Her jazzy, almost whiny vocals make you want to sway and sing along. While the song did feel a bit out of place, it is a fun song that I could listen to over and over again and still feel surprised when it ends.

Closing the album and staking its claim as my favorite track, is Webster’s song “Tttttime.” Though all the “T’s” may seem excessive, the light and bouncy vibes of this song will never get old. Webster’s yawny vocals perfectly encapsulate that familiar morning drowsiness. “Tttttime” feels like a lazy Sunday morning, as Webster contemplates the idleness of the day. The repeating phrase “T-t-t-t-t-t-t-t-time” mimics the ticking of an old wooden clock, further emphasizing her listlessness at how the minutes slowly pass by. There is something about “Tttttime” that makes me want to get up and dance through my kitchen. As years pass and Webster writes more albums, “Tttttime” will remain timeless.

Overall, “Underdressed at the Symphony” seems like Webster paying homage to her previous more R&B albums, while also looking ahead to more experimental music. Webster uses “Underdressed at the Symphony” to truly be creative. I really enjoyed this album and rated it a 7/10 correlating to the amount of songs I put on my playlist. The other songs I didn’t enjoy used vocal effects as well, which really annoyed me. As a self-proclaimed Faye Webster enthusiast, I’m very excited to see where this album takes her (preferably without another three-year absence).

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