While we were a little disappointed that Your Way didn’t end up on the set, we are not disappointed with H.E.R. came with on the second installment of her self-titled series.
The singer gives us a little less spoken word this time around and more of her singing voice, which has a lovely tone to it. Her more alto-range sets her apart from a lot of modern, female singers who tend to lean into the more sweetheart, angelic tones. Everything she sings tends to come across as effortlessly sultry without it being too much for what she’s trying to sing about.
The lyrics are solid and really worth listening to. There are no moments when you feel like a line is just thrown in to make something else work, it all feels like it has a point. You might just find yourself thinking, “Why didn’t I say that to [enter paramour’s name here] when I felt that way?” There doesn’t seem to have a story due to the sequencing of the tracks, but you get the feeling that she is talking about a single person.
The only major critique we can make is that, listening to all the tracks back-to-back, does make you realize how similar the production of all them are. The songs do not sound the same, but the similarity in tempo and instrumentation does mean that the singer is the one who has to provide the majority of the variations vocally (she does manage to do it, though). The short length of the EP does this aspect a favor as the listener doesn’t have a lot of time to get bored with the sound, but it does make things a little hard to separate if you aren’t paying close attention.
Despite that, this EP is imminently satisfying. You get the perspective of a young woman who is unafraid of sexuality and the expression of her own emotions, but who also doesn’t run away from the complications to her life that these things tend to bring, whether it’s heartache or just a misunderstanding. She is uncompromising in her own validity as a participant in a relationship and that brings a strong sense of confidence to even her most unsure moments.
Our favorite tracks are Lights On, Gone Away, and I Won’t. The most skippable track is Every Kind Of Way.