Having played and toured with the likes of Sharon Van Etten and Beth Orton, LA based artist Heather Woods Broderick has just released her fifth album, Labyrinth. Partly written during the lockdown of 2020, the album offers a beautifully honest reflection on life and the difficulties of navigating the modern world. Oozing an anthemic, sparkling splendour and glistening allure, each track chimes with a captivating heartfelt resonance.
We think one of the best ways to get to know an artist is by asking what music inspires them. So, to celebrate the release of Labyrinth, we caught up with Heather to ask about the music that has inspired her the most. So, read about her five favourite albums, and make sure you watch the atmospheric new video for latest single ‘Crashing Against The Sun‘ below...
Cindy Lauper – She’s So Unusual
This record was released the year I was born. It was an outlier in my parents’ record collection, one that was mostly made up of folk/singer songwriters of that era. It was my absolute favourite record to put on as a young girl, and I have vivid memories of the babysitter coming over and playing this record while we all danced around laughing together. It was most definitely the most upbeat music I can remember listening to as a young child, and it left a huge impression on me. I love how this record is catchy, silly, and strong at the same time.
Tricky – Pre Millenium Tension
I listened to this record on many runs over the course of writing Labyrinth. It was a big inspiration as far as rhythm and beats go for me. I really love the simple repetitive nature of hip hop / trip hop music, and I think Tricky does an amazing job melding genres. I love the use of the closed high hat in these beats (and in a lot of hip hop), and this influence showed up in the beats I made for the record.
Gigi Masin – Talk To The Sea
Beats and soft synths – I’m a big fan. The simple meditative beats and simple melodies that echo through this record have really infused into me over many many hours of repeated listening. The kind of record that makes time become amorphous. This would definitely be a desert island disc choice of mine, and I think the simple tones and beats in this record really influenced me and my desire to make my own beats.
Phil Collins – But Seriously
This is one record that punctuated my childhood. The song ‘Another Day In Paradise’ was on the radio a lot as a kid. I can remember this song coming on while we were driving around in the family Volkswagen Vanagon. The soft synth sounds of this record and era in general are sounds that I am so drawn to, so I feel like I can attribute that pull to my experience hearing them at a formative age.
Sam Gendel and Sam Wilkes – Music For Saxofone and Bass Guitar
Repetition – I’m a big fan of it, and this record is all about it. It settles you into a groove and it lets you stay there. I love the concept of this record and have played it countless times. These guys are incredible players, and I’m always impressed when players that can shred choose not to. It feels like their individual styles have room to come forward with this ‘less is more’ approach.
Massive thanks to Heather for sharing her Five Favourites with us! Watch the atmospheric new video for latest single ‘Crashing Against The Sun’ here:
Labyrinth, the new album from Heather Woods Broderick, is out now via Western Vinyl.
Photo Credit: Sophie Kuller