Lives Outgrown by Beth Gibbons album review by Christopher Patterson for Northern Transmissions


Lives Outgrown

Beth Gibbons

Beth Gibbon’s Lives Outgrown is her debut solo album and quite an interesting work. It is a nice album that grows on one with its unique style and sound, which mimic, as the artwork and title might suggest, a look into Gibbons’ life and its many layers. It almost feels like a look into where she has been. The atmospheric tone of Lives Outgrown mainly succeeds in conveying the scope of her mind and life, but it falters due to points of incoherency, resulting in a somewhat monotonous and mindless examination.

The title and sounds of “Tell Me Who You Are Today” clearly convey Lives Outgrown seeming message. We are witnessing someone exploring themselves. Memories and a sense of understanding oneself are evident. To be more precise, it feels as if we are seeing Gibbons collapse into past versions of herself, almost like breaking into the memories upon questioning. As this track evolves, it feels as if parts of her flow through one another. Sadly, Gibbons’ bold concept only succeeds halfway. Mostly because it feels, by the end, like a song meant to be a building block for others rather than a track that stands in its own right. Its purpose, to put it simply, feels diluted and almost wasted in its attempt, yet it compels you into the album. The main issue with Lives Outgrown lies in its attempt to explore interesting, complex, yet simple ideas about the examination of one’s life. While it mostly succeeds in doing so, the result is a

collection of songs that don’t stand alone well. Although they complement each other fairly well, the lack of quality in the songs dampens their artistic impact. Themes over quality. While Lives Outgrown does make some unique spectacles with her use of vocals and production to heighten it, the work by the end feels as though it lacks the merit it attempts to achieve.

Lives Outgrown is a solid, but disappointing, return for one of the most significant artists of her time. It has some unique styles, but it seems hurt by its impact. Themes are a burden that seems to have taken over the quality. The quality itself is not bad, but it lacks anything of note or significance in this album. It is, simply put, fine. In this work, parts of oneself and her life throughout time serve as key areas. However, at times, this concept can feel more focused than its execution. Overall, Lives Outgrown is an interesting album with some nice themes but lacks strong execution.

Pre-order Lives Outgrown by Beth Gibbons HERE


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