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Everything Changed [Bonus DVD]

Everything Changed [Bonus DVD]

4.3 3
by Abra Moore
Everything Changed is Abra Moore's first album in six years. The struggle to bring it to life -- from the shambles of another record deal and the tumultuous life occurrences addressed in its songs -- places it automatically outside the realm of the simple ambition required to advance one's career by issuing a new pop album. As such, it is necessary to forgo the


Everything Changed is Abra Moore's first album in six years. The struggle to bring it to life -- from the shambles of another record deal and the tumultuous life occurrences addressed in its songs -- places it automatically outside the realm of the simple ambition required to advance one's career by issuing a new pop album. As such, it is necessary to forgo the standard critical language in addressing it, and to meet it on its own terms and speak its language: that of the human heart, exposed, raw, and desiring wholeness. What is contained within these 13 songs is something mercurial, enigmatic; in essence, it is a work of desire but not covetousness. These songs communicate directly to anyone who has ever experienced wholesale, soul-threatening brokenness and wears the exquisite scar that informs everyday life in its aftermath. Inside the album's booklet, on its first facing page, is a photograph of Moore either entering or emerging from kissing her image in a mirror. It contains no vanity or narcissism. Instead, it expresses honest, ego-less self-regard and beatific love. It is nearly holy in its expression, because it understands that in order to extend oneself to others, one has to accept and embrace the truth and beauty of her own countenance in frailty and vulnerability, as well as in strength and purpose. The music on this record fleshes out this archetype with spiritual and emotional depth and dimension. Moore worked with producer and multi-instrumentalist Jay Joyce on Everything Changed. The end result not only extended her aesthetic reach, but raised his creative watermark as well. Using everything at her disposal, including standard rock instrumentation, ornate strings, keyboard and percussion treatments, electronic beats and textures, and wonderfully subtle atmospherics, Moore strips the considerable quirky charm displayed on her earlier records to the bone; in its place is naked, tender, and sometime frightening emotion, presented with painstaking attention to detail and lush arrangements not to soften the impact, but to celebrate it fearlessly. Ultimately, everything on Everything Changed is a love song that reveals its many faces to be sure, but also its shadows. On "I Do," with its gorgeous cornet and piano intro, love is expressed as solidarity and faith. "No Fear" is love as invitation to an inward journey with the Beloved. Its off-kilter and loopy nocturnal keyboards and rhythm machines usher in a skeletal verse. It breaks itself wide open in the refrain, and that love enters the world. The totality of love is in "Big Sky," with giddy guitars that bounce and pop against snare drums and washes of electronic and organic keyboards. "Melancholy Love" articulates love as raw need, with its unhurried state of grace delving deeply into the grain of that emotion as marrow; acoustic guitars and hand percussion sway and weave through the lyric. "Family Affair" and "Pull Away" are the centerpieces of the album; they offer a portrait of love's aftermath as utter ruin, one that purifies as its burns away and hollows. On both tracks, pianos and strings create the lilting lyric lines that reveal the emptiness and ache in the grain of Moore's voice. It is the sound of one's skin being removed in order to reveal the unidentifiable treasures -- even to the protagonist -- within. But as memories of love's sweetness and its fracture become known, other instruments illustrate these mixed and overwhelming emotions with great taste that reveal grace in the process. This is also true of tracks such as "I Win" and "The End." But there is the victorious dimension of love as well -- the one that exists on the other side of its loss. "Taking Chances," with its minimal yet elegant guitars and shuffling drums, becomes a swirling anthem of willingness and purpose. It displays fearlessness not because the protagonist isn't afraid, but because she is, yet is willing to step over the line and speak anyway. "Shining Star," which closes the album, showcases fat, treated acoustic and phased electric guitars that entwine in the center of the mix just over the drums and pulsing synthesizers to underscore the singer's utter lack of guile in letting go and embracing whatever comes next. For his part, Joyce is a fantastic guitarist who colors and expands the melody while never saturating it. His method of orchestration and dynamic is nothing short of brilliant and restrained. He takes Moore's lyric as instruction inside his arrangement and lets it be the guiding force for its execution. This pair may adorn these songs in something that approaches innocent whimsy, but they never attempt to mask the sterling, rigorous emotional pictures in Moore's words. Ultimately, on Everything Changed, Moore elevates the pop song to the place of art form and poetry. Quite unintentionally, it is one of those major statements that redefine an artist outside of her previously defined context. She accomplishes in her way what Joni Mitchell's Court and Spark or Rickie Lee Jones' Pirates did. Everything Changed is aptly titled; within its grooves is the terrain where the past falls away in a shining, deeply moving moment of clarity, and everything, present and future, becomes not only new, but entirely possible.

Product Details

Release Date:
Koch Records


Album Credits

Performance Credits

Abra Moore   Primary Artist,Acoustic Guitar,Piano,Drums,Vocals
Giles Reaves   Piano,Drums,Keyboards
Mitch Watkins   Synthesizer,Acoustic Guitar,Bass,Electric Guitar,Keyboards,Background Vocals,keyboard bass
Mark Morris   Band
Chris Feinstein   Bass
Dave Harrison   Drums
Jay Joyce   Bass,Guitar,Bass Guitar,Keyboards,Vocals,Background Vocals
Pat Mastelotto   Drums
Neal Rosengarden   Trumpet,French Horn
Will Taylor   Strings
Kyle Schneider   Band
Jon Sanchez   Band
John Deaderick   Keyboards
Mike Mogis   Banjo,Guitar,Glockenspiel,Mellotron,ARP
A.J. Mogis   Upright Bass
Maria Taylor   Background Vocals
Shane Sanders   Strings
Leigh Mahoney   Strings
James D. Hall   Trumpet
Mike Elam   Trumpet
Jamie Desautels   Strings

Technical Credits

Mitch Watkins   Producer,Engineer
Paul deLay   Composer
Enrique Berro Garcia   Camera Operator
Jay Joyce   Composer,Programming,Producer,Engineer
Michael Ramos   Composer
Stuart Sullivan   Engineer
Abra Moore   Composer
Mike Mogis   Producer,Engineer
Jeff Chenault   Art Direction
Jason Hall   Engineer
George Couri   Executive Producer
Tawnya Lorae   Composer
Traci Goudie   Camera Operator
Chris LeBeau   Photo Production

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Everything Changed [Bonus DVD] 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
this cd is absolutely amazing. i had heard most of these tracks on no fear and they really hit close to home. abra moore was writing about the fall and rise again of the relationship i was in. the end was exactly what i was going through and so was family affiar. the songs spoke to me and the music was stunning as well. when i heard she was putting a new cd out finally. i was intrigued. finding out that there would be some new songs as well really excited me. but could do it again? speak to me in a way no one has in a long time. as if she was writing what my heart was beating. well did. the opener i do, expresses exactly how i feel towards the person i love. when i had heard this song for the first time my somewhat ex had been through something awful and i wanted him to know that when you can't remember why anyone could love you or understand i do. i am starting to think that abra moore stole my heart and is using it write her songs. the music is even better too. i do is a great piece of alternative pop that is more in line with here strangest places cd than no fear which is great because strangest places is a masterpiece. the thing that struck me most about this cd is how the new songs sound out of place listening to them by themselves. they really fit with the other songs. and the other songs don't sound dated either which could've been a problem as these songs are 2 years old. the music sparkles, the lyrics speak volumes about my life, and abra moore is back. 4 words i've been waiting to hear and say.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago