First Impressions: Laura Elizabeth Hughes – We, Myself, I

Recorded over the summer during lockdown, the EP We, Myself, I finds Irish singer-songwriter Laura Elizabeth Hughes serving as her own engineer and producer. It’s a tantalizing, if too brief, taste of a true talent on the ascent. Her captivating vocals couple with elegiac lyrics to deliver a trio of tunes sure to take up many repeated plays on the player of your choice. 

The acoustic “Days,” the lead single and first track, sets the mood with a mournful ode to the blurred days and nights of the stay-at-home life, when yesterday and tomorrow are no different than today. It builds slowly, with layered vocals serving as echoes of the mind: “Scrolling through the deep end in my silence/lying through my teeth that/that I’m not bored/with the way that the days/the days lose their standing…”

“Two,” the second track, finds the gradients of her voice colored by piano instead of acoustic guitar. She explained to Hot Press that it was inspired by the stasis she faced during the early days of the pandemic, when it seemed as if many of her peers were quick to adapt to the changing reality. “I was looking at social media and everybody putting out content and doing live streams and being productive and I felt I was failing at getting on with things.” That’s a sentiment pretty much everyone shares, I think, with the feeling spurred by the faux reality presented by Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

The EP’s title track is another moody wonder spurred by the self-doubts that come with the distance the pandemic has placed between lovers. “I’m singing out to cleanse the air while wondering if you still do/if you still do care for my face, my taste, the way I move…” 

My only criticism: the set’s brevity. I’ve come to play it alongside her 2020 “Pandemonium” and 2019 “For You (Home)” singles and 2018 EP Ceremony to create a way-cool album of sorts. (Like We, Myself, I, they’re all available on the usual streaming sites and Bandcamp.) As I noted a few weeks ago, she’s a singer-songwriter to keep an eye on.

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