EP Review: Tess Posner – Alchemy

Alchemy is a new release from musician Tess Posner, taking the listener on a journey of self-growth and discovery throughout the five amazing tunes contained within this EP. It’s best listened to in order, as the tracks go from a position of pain and trauma, before moving to a place of healing and empowerment, using alchemical processes as a metaphor for love.

By Jane Howkins

Alchemy kicks off with opener Feral Child. It starts out pretty slowly, with Tess’ vocals taking centre stage from the very start. Her lyrics are extremely emotive, raising the volume up as the tension builds, with more and more instrumentation added over time. The chorus is really lush, featuring a steady beat that wouldn’t be out of place in a modern pop song, fitting the bass well. However, it’s different from most of the pop out there, also featuring some lovely piano moments.

Volcano is a little more uptempo, featuring a faster drum beat and an intense bassline, as the piano trickles along in the background. The track breaks down slightly before the chorus, introducing a gorgeous string melody that adds a classical vibe to the track. Volcano is exceedingly beautiful, seeing Tess’ voice really soar on the chorus.

My Heart Is Dry takes things down a notch, starting with a neoclassical piano melody. However, the rhythm section soon kicks in, making for something extremely atmospheric as a whole. The backing strings are rather subtle, but they really help to add extra layers to the piece, turning it into something absolutely heartwrenching.

Ghosts is the penultimate tune on offer on Alchemy. It’s possibly the most stripped-down track on the record, starting with just a simple piano melody, accompanying Tess’ voice in a haunting way. It’s a really beautiful song, allowing Tess’ vocals and lyrics to really shine through, developing a more folky sound in her music.

Black Cloud closes the EP out nicely – again, it starts with just the piano and Tess’ voice, although a range of electronic and acoustic instruments are added after a while. The dynamics are used really nicely here, going from the slower verses into a set of anthemic choruses, ending Alchemy on a real high note.

Alchemy is a fantastic EP, and one that shows just how skilled Tess Posner really is. Containing elements of pop, electronica, folk and classical music, there really is something here for everyone.

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