On Vyvienne Long’s expansive third LP, A Lifetime of High Fives, the Dublin-based artist remains poised across 12 enchanting tracks. In 50 minutes, the listener is presented with a variety of challenging themes such as heartbreak, murder, and money troubles set to classically-tinged folk arrangements allieviated by a captivating lightness.
Following her 2013 release, Vyvienne Long Live with the Balanescu Quartet, the multiinstrumentalist - primarily regarded as a cellist - continues to add depth to her intricately textured compositions by enlisting help from yet another ensemble. This time, we're treated to a finely tuned collaboration with the Contempo Quartet along with powerful appearances from the Laetare Vocal Ensemble.
On this occasion, Long excels as a lyricist. Her finest moments, Enough and You’re the Sun, exemplify how Long’s songwriting has the ability to shift seamlessly between ambitiously descriptive accounts and concisely constructed short stories.
The highly emotive combination of clarinet and strings swirling around Long’s distinct vocals are tones to savour in a live setting. Undoubtedly, Vyvienne Long’s album launch for A Lifetime of High Fives in Dublin’s Lost Lane on November 29th is not to be missed.