At the start of February, Cork born artist Jen Ella released her new EP ‘Spoken Words’.
Jen Ella, who is originally from Cork but is now based in Glasgow, released her first two singles in 2018 and 2019 and has now followed them up with this beautiful new EP. She has played numerous gigs across both Scotland and Ireland and made her debut at Celtic Connections and the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.
The root of her music lies in traditional Irish music and folk, however, she incorporates blues, rock and indie into her music also.
The EP is comprised of three songs: Spoken Words, Hey Blue and Dear Annie.
Spoken Words, the first song from the EP, sounds like an upbeat song from the opening music but the lyrics tell a different story! Jen Ella’s soft and husky tones paint a picture of a dwindling relationship where she tells us that “for once i’m silent, you’ve got your way.” The person she is singing about is “in a different mindset” and ultimately, the two are on a completely different page. She goes on to tell us about the “endless games” and “spoken words” and how there is “nothing left to gain” from staying in the relationship any longer. The song is beautifully written and despite the sad undertones, it makes for some very easy listening.
Hey Blue is the second song on the EP and tells us of someone (or something?) aptly named Blue. Jen Ella seems to personify sadness in this song and tells us how Blue can “look right through me and not even smile”. As the song goes on, she recounts how twenty people are “staring back” and she feels “bleak inside”. The final line before addressing Blue again, explains to us that it is “you and me for eternity”, reminding us that feeling low is a natural feeling that is with us forever. Hey Blue is the darker of the three songs that is backed by the repetitive chords of Jen Ella’s guitar in the background.
The final song on this EP is entitled Dear Annie. The song opens by telling us how Annie was “the secret of the family” because she was “bounded by a shameful history”. From the lyrics, we learn that Annie gave birth at sixteen and was institutionalised because of this. The song is reminiscent of the Magdalene laundries and how young women would be institutionalised and “no one was to be seen” after going in, as this would be considered as such a shameful act to their families. Although Dear Annie recounts a terrible period in history, it is my favourite song of the three because Jen Ella isn’t afraid to address this issue in her music.
If you’d like to give Jen Ella’s Spoken Words EP a listen, you can do so here.