The latest LP from Azniv Korkejian under her Bedouine moniker is a meditative slip into the folk cocoon. Hung on her soft-focus surreal sensibility and storyteller’s soul, the record brings to mind endless stretches of road as often as summer porch sit-ins while the rain pools in the garden. Korkejian’s voice has a strident ethereality to it, feeling forever pressed in glass, eschewing others who let the creases of age and the uncertainty of youth color their writing. That said, the songs themselves lean towards a classic ‘70s folk form — drawing lines from the plush territory of early Nick Drake, Karen Dalton or Duncan Browne on through acolytes like Fleet Foxes, Leah Senior, and Aldous Harding.
What’s most apparent about the album is its intimacy. While Bedouine might explore songs in character, there’s a feeling that Korkejian is telling these as personal bedtime tales — broken lullabies that flicker with an amber glow of firelight. At first blush there’s an urge to put this squarely into a category of blanket-warm folk, but like Drake before her, the comfort of these songs is merely coloring on tales of survivors, grievers, misanthropes, and melancholy travelers. At this point, few need convincing to tune into Bedouine’s particularly affecting ache, but I’ll add to the chorus urging you onward toward, Waysides, one of her most fully realized albums to date.
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