Album Review: Your Life Is a Record by Brandy Clark
Excellent, Based on 2 Critics
AllMusic - 90 Based on rating 9/10
Your Life Is a Record can't help but feel like a response to Big Day in a Small Town, the 2016 album that found singer/songwriter Brandy Clark leaping into the world of major labels after carving out a career as one of country music's most successful songwriters. Clark didn't wind up cracking country radio in 2016, which may explain why 2020's Your Life Is a Record feels a bit like a retreat from the rat race, even if it finds her reuniting with Big Day's producer, Jay Joyce. While Clark isn't turning a blind eye to the modern world -- indeed, she addresses it directly on "Bigger Boat," a wry shuffling paean to inclusion sung with Randy Newman -- she's certainly not spending much time chasing trends, choosing to record an album the old-fashioned way: accentuating a cozy acoustic quartet with the lush sounds of the Memphis Strings and Horns.
Plenty of songwriters could find pathos in a pawn shop. A small-town staple full of other people's heirlooms, hawked at bargain prices--it's an easy vessel for tugging heartstrings. Brandy Clark understands this. "No one goes into a pawn shop on the best day of their life," she joked while introducing a new song, called "Pawn Shop," at a recent concert.