Carla Morrison is one of the many indie sweethearts that has taken the Latin music blogosphere by storm. Her subdued voice, heart-wrenching lyrics and innocent charm have made Morrison one of 2010’s most exciting discoveries. After previously releasing a couple of EP’s, Morrison called on her friend and popular Latin Alternative artist, Natalia Lafourcade, to compose Mientras Tú Dormías, which is hands down Morrison’s finest moment yet.
The eight-track album begins with “Compartir,” a beautiful poem about true love put to song. The engaging, retro-folk sound has the simple charm found in her early EPs but is more melodically sophisticated thanks to Lafourcade’s composing skills. Morrison’s voice never overpowers but rather slowly creeps into your ears until you are eventually left helpless. Her brutal honesty and confidence radiate on tracks like “Porque Me Haces Enloquecer,” “Tú Me Enchinas La Piel,” “Cada Parte de Tu Ser” and “Es Alimento a Mi Bien”.
The album’s best moment is without a doubt “Una Salida.” For those who do not speak Spanish, do not let the the doo-wop style barbershop quartet intro fool you into thinking it is a joyous song because the lyrics tell a different story. Morrison is the protagonist of this heartbreak tale as she is looking for an escape, una salida, but never quite finds it. As evident in the lyrics (Buscando una salida y yo estoy tan perdida), she is indeed lost. With minimal instrumental arrangements, Morrison is able to craft a song that is filled with despair and melancholy while still making listeners smile and feel joyous. That feeling of joyousness is what true beauty is supposed to give you.
If there ever was a downside to this album it would be that it’s only eight songs long, which leaves it in murky waters of deciding whether its an EP or an LP, but other than that Mientras Tú Dormías is as good as it gets when it comes to Latin Indie .
While Mientras Tú Dormías is not for the faint of heart, it is worth your attention. The more you listen, the more you will tremble and feel your eyes watering while still wanting to sing at the top of your lungs. Carla Morrison is that hopeless romantic we can’t help but to admire; she’s brutally honest and always carries her heart on her shoulders.While Morrison may not have that broad appeal of a Julieta Venegas, her music is equally stunning. It is fresh, sincere and as captivating as anything we have heard this year from the Latin music world. What is next for Morrison is uncertain, but if this album is any indication of what is to come then we are going to be hearing a lot from this Tecate sweetheart.