Hailing from South-East London, singer-songwriter Bea Anderson graces us with a deeply intimate and sonically gorgeous debut EP, Eden.
Through six carefully woven tracks, Anderson invites us to listen, to feel, and to reflect as she navigates love, loss, and growth on this personal project. As if she were confiding in a friend, the subject of her affection, and herself, all at once, Anderson guides us through the many lessons of love.
“Dear Me” serves as the first course in that collection. It is an open love letter to herself, and a statement of intent from a maturing voice, seemingly one that is through to the ‘other side’. In her reflections, she asserts the kind of love that she deserves from herself and from others: a loud and devoted love that holds no bounds.
It is therefore unsurprising that our second course in the school of Anderson is “Easy”, where she describes what love can and should be: embracing. Like we hear elsewhere, our protagonist is not unfamiliar with the idea of challenge (within love). However, the ultimate takeaway is that loving someone should not feel like a struggle, even in the face of adversity. And importantly, the work around it is made to feel easy through a pure and giving form of love.
All throughout, Anderson’s lyricism is uncomplicated and paired with soft vocal harmonies and tender production that often leaves us feeling vulnerable and exposed, much like being in love. “Easy” is a perfect example of this where the production is dominated by just her voice and plush tones from her guitar for the most part. It evokes an intimate atmosphere in which you are the sole attendee to her one-woman show.
“Shrugs” is a welcomed break from the rest of the EP with its light, vibrant and summer-ready production. Here, she explores what it means to find the right person which feels reminiscent of early 00s R&B. However, we get the overall sense that she is battling feelings of hesitation because the time is not right as she reflects on keeping her love interest at bay.
On the single “Nauseous”, she sings “don’t you hold my secrets while you keep yours to your chest” as to describe a one-sided and non-nourishing connection, which on your first listen could be seen through the lens of Anderson in conversation with a partner. However, on a second or third listen, you may hear it from the lens of her speaking directly to the listener: I am baring all on this track and EP, but don’t you be the same. It is a re-uniting with the maturing voice that we found on “Dear Me”. “Nauseous” is seemingly about emerging from a frenzied kind of love and arriving at a new self.
Eden is ultimately a tale of personal triumph supported by lush soundscapes. Anderson writes with an awareness that brings her EP’s vulnerability and introspection to the fore. Overall, it is clear that Anderson is firming her place in the tapestry of a refreshed UK soul scene.
Written by Arnold Senoga (@rotatingwheel)
Listen here: https://ditto.fm/-eden