Album Reviews

Jordana – Face The Wall

(Grand Jury) UK release date: 20 May 2022

A prime talent expands her pop vision beyond the bedroom into more ambitious vistas on her third album, which glistens and shines with confidence

Jordana - Face The Wall Twenty-one-year-old singer songwriter, producer and all round indie pop visionary Jordana is part of a new wave of Gen Z artists making music individually and on their own terms unencumbered by boundaries, barriers or restrictions of the music industry and what an artist “should” be doing. Face The Wall is the third full length album from someone who has already spent much time making music and honing her craft, and it finds her expanding her pop vision beyond the bedroom into more ambitious vistas. 

It’s a record that fully realises and makes good on the promise that she has always shown going back to her formative days as a teenager making music on GarageBand and uploading to Bandcamp while making ends meet by busking in her home town of North Beach, Maryland. Her songs here glisten and shine with confidence slightly tempered by feelings of self doubt and trepidation that we can all relate to, certainly in the pandemic world in which this record was created. 

Jordana plays every instrument on and co-produced the album, which is accordingly firmly defined in her image. The sound is predominantly alternative pop in which dynamic melodies meet yearning, widescreen choruses. See for example the perfectly measured and deeply affecting opener Pressure Point, or the gorgeous soaring heart swells of Catch My Drift. 

The album is the product of years of introspection, and finding yourself and what you want to be. Jordana realises that in the expressive and emotionally resonant quality of her songs, every one of which here is uniformly excellent. Even if they’re not groundbreaking, they have an open hearted relatability that allows them to really deeply connect. The album is also vividly dynamic, with the pace switching up on the Goldfrapp style glam rock stomp of Play Fair, while To The Ground’s fevered twists and turns are a compelling example of the album’s charms. 

We are living in a golden age now for assured, fearless new artists who know exactly who they are and are leading the way in demonstrating that you can be hugely accessible and make melodic pop while keeping your independence and following your own vision. Recent years have seen outstanding releases by people like Claud, Chloe Moriondo and, on an even more successful level, Maggie Rogers. Jordana is firmly in this lineage, and Face The Wall is an outstanding realisation of a prime talent.

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Jordana – Face The Wall