Sprouted just in time for spring, Mini Dresses’ sophomore album, Heaven Sent, is the Boston trio’s most intimate and inviting DIY-pop creation yet.

Lira and Caufield had been collaborating on numerous recording projects since 2012; it wasn’t until 2014, with the addition of drummer and friend, Luke Reed, and the desire to return to informal, homegrown music, that Mini Dresses was established as their focal project. Warping elements of atmospheric pop and alternative rock to construct their own design in the realm of shoegaze, Heaven Sent is a pastel-shaded dream. With unrefined, diary-like verses aired out in breathy vocals and an array of emotions residing within each track, this spirited and vulnerable home-mixed project invites an immersive listening experience.

Throughout Heaven Sent, the listener feels as though they’ve been granted access to the vocalist’s private rehearsal session, assigning a new meaning to bedroom pop. Indistinct verses are given life as dim guitars licks echo behind shape-shifting vocals. With a mood-driven approach, each track is lead by its own pulse and saturated in its own color. In tracks like “I’d Notice” and “Lady Running” punchy beats spontaneously arise; in “The One Who Heard You” honeyed vocals rest over a radiantly textured production, electrifying the otherwise dim, dulcet album.

On “Lady Running” zesty shakers weave through guitar strums that design a warm, sun-kissed beat. Feelings of entrapment and dissatisfaction inhabit the verses: “hide behind/ a strained smile…another year goes by and I’m/no further than the one before.” While these verses are despondent, they’re delivered with grace and ease, seeming as though this track acted as a source of alleviation for our vocalist – inviting the listener to encourage their own form of self-release.

A few tracks later, “Dark One” paints an entirely different atmosphere. A deep gray begins to emerge as mystifying, off-beat guitars introduce the track and a murky voice sings, “Now here comes the dark one.” The off-kilter twist within this production beautifully accents these indistinct, tenderly sung verses. While our narrator remains behind the shadows both vocally and lyrically, a refreshing sense of originality courses through this melody. With such a defined mood present, one can seamlessly submerge into this gray-seeded mindset and assign this track their own meaning.

Through colorful productions, Heaven Sent beautifully outlines fluidity of emotion, casting dramatic skies that can seamlessly alter the air in a room. Their vague verses invite the listener to connect their own stories and attach their own feelings to these tracks, allowing this album to become personal to each individual listener. The fluctuating disposition from one track to the next and the ability for these contrasting tracks to synthesize into one entity is what makes Heaven Sent feel so alive.

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