Always Lovers has an all at once distant and intimate sound about it, somehow seeming like an up close and personal confession as well as being merely a whisper or an idea hanging on a passing breeze. The artist’s leading vocal performance is much gentler here than on previous recordings, though it has always had a captivating softness to it.
The way the music changes part way through the song adds something of an unusual air of mystique. The recording takes you with it, much like a gust of wind would with anything light enough to carry, and the journey is unpredictable – at times seeming as though it may end, then bursting back into some emotionally lifted moment.
The instrumentation in this song is superb, a really interesting alternative sound, as simplistic as ever but it feels like so much more – there’s something special about the piano and the vocal style. The recording has a notably vintage aura; the song strikes initially as a long lost, classic jazz ballad, though as things develop, as the mood varies, as the imagery switches up a level for that alternate key, everything appears brand new. The way the lyrics change for this alternative musical moment is a fine example of clever songwriting. The imagery used in this moment is so much brighter and clearer cut, more accessible, than the somewhat more personal touch that the verses display.
It’s another strong release from an ever expressive and talented singer and songwriter. The way Pauline Frechette represents these sounds of the less conventional, less mainstream world of music is skilfully precise and always portrayed with genuine passion. The song shows both human vulnerability and acceptance of emotion, the sad and the reflective, the fear and the strength. It’s a beautiful piece of music and writing.