ALBUM REVIEW: Brooklyn Alt-Pop Songwriter Eliza Spear Tells It Like It Is On ‘Right Now, It’s Like This’

Brooklyn-based singer-songwriter Eliza Spear’s genre-bending debut full-length album, Right Now, It’s Like This, brings an approachable and modern sound that acts as a looking glass into the young artist’s life.

The 23-year-old has been writing songs since the age of 13, and booked her first show just one year later at 14. It’s safe to say making music is something that enraptured this up and coming songwriter from an early age.

With an affinity for the in-person experience, Spear spent the summer of 2021 on her self-organized cross-country “Can I Play In Your Backyard?” tour, preparing for the release of her debut album in December of 2022. 

The album begins with Spear’s emotionally charged voice singing, “I am my own mother / I hold who I once was,” in the opening track, rightfully named, “Mother.” This kicks off a ten-song album exploring themes of regret, forgiveness, grief, time, and loneliness. Though the track is short, only about a minute, it packs a punch that ripples throughout the rest of the album. 

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The titular “Right Now, It’s Like This” captures Spear’s Americana-pop essence.

The production is as impressive as her voice, pulling back to highlight her expressive vocal abilities and leaning in to emphasize them. Her writing strength shines through in lyrics like, “Love looks like many things and beings, honey / And right now it looks like this / Maybe one day I’ll want you the way that I want to / But I gave you all I have to give,” in this anthemic after-love song.

The album is delightfully cohesive, as each song flows into the next with meticulous care.

In the uniquely titled, “Damn! I Forgot I Was Lonely!”, Spear plays with vulnerability in this simultaneously upbeat and reflective track. She describes a false sense of security in being alone, coming out of it with a simple, “How dare you try to hold me / I wish nobody had shown me.” We hear you, Eliza- ignorance is bliss! 

But life goes on, as does Spear, into “Tripping,” which describes the process of moving on to someone new. Spear finds her niche in crafting deeply relatable stories over dance-worthy instrumentals that command the room. 

She pulls back from new beginnings briefly in “Everything You Wish You Had,” a daydream conversation with a past love. She wonders, as many of us have, “If you got your hands on time, would you turn it back / And do you see me in everything you wish you had?” 

The album closes with “Halfwit,” perhaps the most heartbreaking track from the album. It draws upon each of the album’s themes with sincerity, as Spear laments the treatment of her inner child, searching for ways to forgive herself. 

Spear has poured years into this Right Now, It’s Like This, and her intentional creative process shines through as listeners ride along her emotional, humble, and ultimately healing reflection on life so far. The sky’s the limit for this rising young songstress.

Eliza Spear

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