Music Reviews

Torres Torres

(self-released) Rating - 9/10

Mackenzie Scott, aka Torres, owes her family big time. The 22-year-old singer/songwriter was already equipped with warm and enticing vocals, notable guitar skills, and a first class education from Belmont University’s songwriting program. Apparently, family members all chipped in to buy her the electric Gibson guitar heard on the self-titled album. She’s been crediting the success of her sound to finally having the ability to plug-in, and if that’s true – her family has bestowed upon her the key to one of the most promising debut albums of 2013.

There’s no way Scott has been on this earth long enough to have experienced all of the life on this album. Just in case you’re skimming through this, again she is indeed 22-years-old. Exponentially mature lyrics for this young woman. Her words are cultured and grounded. She doesn’t go on about how love and life have taken over her. She doesn’t give off an impression of being swept away by uncontrollable urges or vehemence. There’s a blend of cynicism and politeness in her voice. She’s reassuring and practical, while admitting to all the things that are wrong. She apologizes for the way she loves in Jealousy and Ijealousy gets me sometimes, but I don’t mind/no I don’t mind. There is no pain or punishment in her desires – just very well placed passion.

This organization is clearly demonstrated in Honey when she takes advantage of a polished melody and the simplicity of the chorus, Honey, while you were ashing in your coffee, I was thinking about telling you/what you’ve done to me. The bloggers went completely bullshit over this line. This is a very calm delivery of an uprising of emotions, while she allows the sinister, raw guitar to carry the depth and feeling of the message. The riff becomes absolutely gnarly and the feedback adds a messiness that enhances the maturity. November Baby transcends the typical female singer/songwriter lullaby. The melody is easy and repetitive, but so incredibly soothing that you can become completely lost in the guitar, forcing you to repeat it just to regain focus on the harmonies.

I’ve listened to Torres from beginning to end a number of times since its release, and my natural criticisms ceased to flow. For a debut album from a gal who can’t even legally rent a car by herself, this is very impressive. She attracts to a wide audience, displays restraint and obscurity at appropriate times, and I believe she’ll open the door to creative collaborations with many of her predecessors.