Oregon Music News: Oregon’s all-genre music magazine since 2009


Johanna Warren: ‘nūmūn’


I spent the summer in Wildwood, NJ after I graduated from high school. It was during a time when a seventeen-year-old girl could easily talk her way into one of those dance clubs on the boardwalk that served five beers for a dollar.  I never would have dreamt, that three decades later, a musician from Portland would record songs dedicated to lunar magic in a basement in the same city.

Johanna Warren‘s new album, nūmūn, serves as homage to the hunk of rock above us.  It is a formation, by the way, that can coax 82 million billions of gallons of water to move in the Atlantic Ocean and I can understand Warren’s motivation to honor its power with her music. Warren sprinkles her songwriting with such curious magic it conjures up cyclical musings of great canopies of old growth trees and snowy white, feathered creatures you can only spot out of the corner of your eye. It is magic that can only be found in this part of the world and she embraces it perfectly.

Tracks like "Less Traveled" inspire me to sway with those invisible, lunar pulls and pursue a new tradition of shinrin-yoku (you are going to have to look that one up, folks).  Warren is fearless and lovely in her singing and storytelling.  The new album was released by Team Love Records.

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