The second album from Tennessee songwriter Julien Baker wrestles with self-worth, rejection, and God. Centering on her voice, guitar, and piano, Baker begins to sound defiant. November 1 Julien Baker, Phoebe Bridgers, and Lucy Dacus talk about their collaborative new project, the art of not apologizing, and why Idaho is so awesome. October 18 July 26
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Julien Rose Baker born September 29, is an American singer and guitarist. Baker has met critical acclaim for her performances and songwriting, described as emotively cathartic, as well as a fresh take on folk music. In , Baker formed the supergroup Boygenius with Phoebe Bridgers and Lucy Dacus , both of whom she had toured with previously. The group released three songs in August of that year and subsequently announced an EP and accompanying tour.
Everything about Julian was unusual, particularly her intense awareness of failure and frailty: she was a child when the plague came to England, and the sixteen religious visions she chronicles in her book were triggered by a near-fatal illness that struck her at age thirty. Her pursuit of the truth of God is solitary and blazing, gorgeously rigorous, as if she was generating and synthesizing personal theology to light her way through an awful dark. To read her is to observe a young woman flaying herself open in a startling act of devotion. Baker is a Christian whose faith has been shaped by trial and revelation: she is gay, and went through addiction and recovery before she was out of her teens. She is theologically minded and obsessively self-interrogating; on the phone last week, we spent ten minutes talking about Calvinist doctrine, which depends on the presumption of the total depravity of man. Baker came up through the post-punk and hardcore scenes, going to house shows and later playing D. She put the songs on Bandcamp. They were humble and forthright, just guitar and vocals with close, sweet, overdubbed harmonies. The album drew critical attention and a word-of-mouth following.