An artist, unlike any other, Valerie June, has just released her third studio album, “The Moon and Stars: Prescriptions For Dreamers.”
This album falls into many genres, such as Americana, blues, folk and R&B, with a tinge of Country. It is full of intricate instrumentals and lyrics that develop a theme throughout the album of letting something go in order to know the full truth of whatever you are wishing to know.
The 15-song album spans about 44 minutes and tells the story of a seemingly failing relationship combined with internal conflict.
The opening song, “Stay,” is great at representing the issue at hand for the album, with the storyteller facing the difficulty of whether she should stay or leave her partner, as they have not been truthful with her.
She makes it known that she has not once regretted being with her partner, but she is not sure how much longer she can last in the relationship.
The next song, “Stay Meditation,” is filled with flutes and chimes. It seems as if it is meant to be peaceful in order to ease the mind of the storyteller. There is one other song like this at the end of the album, “Starlight Ethereal Silence.”
The album moves to a more sorrowful part of the story, during “Stardust Scattering.” In this song, June sings about people who are seemingly happy but are battling struggle within. The message it is sending is that although we have friends who make us laugh and seem gleeful all the time, they are struggling with something in their lives.
June adds effect to the message of the song by singing with a softer tone. At the end, the instrumentals crescendo to also bring a dramatic effect to the song.
Queen of Memphis Soul, Carla Thomas, is featured in the next track of the album where she recites the African Proverb.
It leads perfectly into the next song, “Call Me a Fool.” The storyteller sings about how she thought she knew what she was getting into when her and her partner first started the relationship, but it was worse than what she thought. She implies repeatedly that she cannot let this person go because her love for her partner is too strong.
However, there seems to be a switch in her mindset because in the next song, “Fallin,’” the storyteller is coming to terms that her relationship is not working, and she needs to let go of her lover.
June sounds the most genuine in this song due to the sadness in her voice, as well as her raspiness, becoming more visible in this song than any other.
After the storyteller lets go of her partner, she realizes letting go of someone she loved was hard, but worth it for herself and her own well-being.
The album reaches a song called, “Within You,” which leaves the message- similar to the theme of the album; in order to see if something is true, you must let it go to come to a genuine realization.
In the case of this story, the storyteller’s genuine realization ended up being that she could not abandon her lover, as they are a team and they will get through this together.
The story moves along to a song, “Home Inside,” which is about finding inner peace when your mind has been chaotic for so long, which leads into the aforementioned final song of the album, “Starlight Ethereal SIlence.”
The story this album tells in the way it tells is one of a kind and compared to June’s other work, this is her best.
The 39-year-old singer-songwriter is a Tennessee native who began her music career performing and recording music in her home state. She has been active in the industry since the age of 19-years-old and has shown no signs of stopping anytime soon.
If you are looking to enhance your music taste, this album is the key to success.