Angel Olsen's latest album, Big Time, is about the expansive power of new love, written during the time Olsen was coming out as queer, and having her first experience of queer love and heartbreak. But this brightness and optimism is tempered by a profound and layered sense of loss; both of Olsen’s parents passed within weeks of each other, just after Olsen came out to them.
Big Time proves Olsen is now writing from a more rooted place of clarity. While her previous record, All Mirrors, was full of dramatic shifts and twists, here the surprises come in their simplicity—a slow swell of strings, instrumentation that cycles like a storm, or sparkling horns in a light-flooded break-up ballad. These are songs not just about transformational mourning, but of finding freedom and joy in the privations as they come.