Eliza Shaddad – The Woman You Want

A product of a year’s work of reflection, The Woman You Want finds the Sudanese-Scottish artist commanding spacious and bold orchestral lines

Album Review by Cheri Amour | 12 Jul 2021
  • Eliza Shaddad - The Woman You Want
Album title: The Woman You Want
Artist: Eliza Shaddad
Label: Rosemundy Records/Wow and Flutter
Release date: 16 Jul

For someone who can list 'multi-linguist', 'philosophy degree', and 'female-led arts collective founder' on their CV, it’s surprising to hear that Eliza Shaddad is still wrestling with the idea of being a better human. But latest release The Woman You Want is the product of a year’s work of reflection for the Sudanese-Scottish artist, now based in the warmer climes of Cornwall.

Like lead single Blossom’s botanical nod, the record has gnarly roots that dig into thoughts of fatigue, identity, and insecurity. The recent grief of losing her grandmother permeates In the Morning (Grandmother Song) as she pushes against the protocols, dryly admitting to losing her affection for flowers. The tenderness continues in Now You’re Alone, a bold penultimate track channeling Natasha Khan’s command for a spacious and roving orchestral line.

But it’s Fine & Peachy where we find Shaddad back in her indie bedrock with a sucker punch opener, as if snatched from nineties-era Juliana Hatfield herself, as she scathingly jibes: 'Fuck you, just tell me what you want me to say / Instead of screwing with my head for days'. Refreshing real-talk and righteous songwriting, The Woman You Want is all the better for it.

Listen to: Fine & Peachy, Waiting Game, Now You’re Alone