Song of the Day

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February 29, 2024

Anna Tivel: “Disposable Camera”

By: Jack Anderson

It’s a total no-brainer. 2020 and quarantine conditions left countless with a bizarre bevy of time to reflect and be inspired, no matter how dire the world felt. And with a lot of those early-COVID-era compositions, the final products reached masses within the first year or two. But some of those existential episodes must’ve made others question what the rush even is, since some of those songs still won’t land in fan’s laps until they’re just right.

It makes sense that Portland’s Anna Tivel falls in the latter category, since she’d already established herself as a modern folk force between a handful of studio albums and a few million streams by the time lockdown came around. And yet COVID didn’t seem to slow down her output. That summer, Tivel tailed 2019’s The Question with a full LP all-acoustic re-imagining, Blue World in 2021, Outsiders in 2022, and Outsiders‘ own acoustic revisit last August. In contrast to Tivel’s pensive, unhurried musical character, it’s honestly crazy to think about how quickly Tivel was cranking ’em out without sacrificing quality.

But apparently, not even all that could fully capture what Anna Tivel penned in the pandemic. Just this past Tuesday Tivel announced her sixth full-length Living Thing, set for release the final day of May. Marking a decade milestone since her debut Before Machines and nearly a half decade since the initial lockdown days, Tivel really upped the ante on Living Thing by collaborating with Bon Iver/Field Report producer Shane Leonard to meticulously maximize each track over an intensive two-month session. The record’s lead single, “Disposable Camera”? Far from a throwaway. Its minimalist music video definitely deserves a few more eyes, and the accessibility of the lyrics make “Disposable Camera” feel like flipping through all-too-familiar snapshots of the recent past. In other words…it’ll click with you.