Angel Olsen has returned with a new single and the announcement of a new album which will arrive this summer.
Technically, it's been a few years since we got a new album from Angel Olsen. Her last proper studio album was 2019's All Mirrors, however, she has been rather prolific in the meantime. Since then, she's released Whole New Mess, a collection of outtakes from All Mirrors, as well as the box set Song of the Lark and Other Found Memories, which collected both of those records, as well as some covers and b-sides. She also released an EP of '80s covers, Aisles, and put out the best song of 2021 with Sharon Van Etten. However, today she's back (again) with a new studio album and the propulsive lead single, "All The Good Times." According to a press release, the album "written during the time Olsen was coming out as queer, and having her first experience of queer love and heartbreak." During this time, she also came out to her parents. "Some experiences just make you feel as though you’re five years old, no matter how wise or adult you think you are," she said. "Finally, at the ripe age of 34, I was free to be me." However, shortly after coming out, her father passed away and she introduced her partner to her family for the first time at his funeral. Only two weeks later, her mother went to the ER, and shortly after that, Olsen soon lost another parent. It was just a few weeks later that she would enter the studio to record her new album, Big Time.
In an almost nod to "Like We Used To," this one starts off with a rollicking drum roll before a steady, tapping beat underscores Angel's hypnotic croon. Twinkling bells and lap steel guitar bring an enchanting quality to the track as Olsen navigates heartbreak and loss through her stunning, twang. Half way through, things pick up and an energy hits with raw, powerful emotions. "Was it love that we shared when we easily kissed? Now it's impossible to conceive" Here, she's contemplating her past, but also her future. How did things wind up this way? Things that once felt so happy, now she impossible to even imagine. Yet, throughout everything, Olsen seems to remain optimistic. "Guess it’s time to wake up from the trip we’ve been on / So long farewell, this is the end / I’ll always remember you just like a friend." At the end of a relationship, it can be so easy to focus on the pain and the breaking point, but Angel is choosing the high road here and remembering all the good times instead.
Big Time is out June 3 via Jagjaguwar.