Over the last decade, Alberta-raised singer Sora has made a strong showing with two albums and an EP. The success of her Celtic influenced melodies and narrative lyrics only continues on her third album Scorpion Moon, slated for release Feb. 28.
There is a great deal to enjoy on this album, but the vocals stand out most. Sora’s voice is strong, clear and melodious through all 11 tracks. There’s very little in terms of editing, allowing the simple-yet-beautiful tones of her vocals to shine through. Accompanying Sora is a small instrumental group that engrosses the listener without being overbearing or overwhelming her.
The music is calm and flowing; it will help to relax you on a quiet night. Each song has a strong narrative presence, with Sora taking inspiration from various folk and fairy tales like “Rapunzel.” Each track’s instrumentals strongly complement the narrative and mood of each song.
As a whole, Scorpion Moon works well. Each song flows into the next, continuing themes of fantasy and wonder as they are explored in Sora’s lyrics. Standout tracks are hard to pick out, but there is enough variety to keep the listener’s interest thanks to change-ups in the instrumentals. For instance, the transition from the track “Hold” and its deep strings to “Piper” and its more prominent percussion is subtle, but done with enough care so that the switch from one song to the next does not cause the album to lose momentum.
Ultimately, the album is a narrative about the forces that shape us and the choices that must be made in order to stand on one’s own. Sora’s Scorpion Moon is a slow album, to be sure, and one that may not be your cup of tea if you prefer more energetic songs. But for those looking for a collection of sweet and soulful melodies, you can’t go wrong with this collection.