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Portland artist Ac Sapphire returns with the decadent new album Dec. 32nd, songs from a cycle that honors Sapphire at her best: guitar, and vocals front and center; celebrations of the songwriter, the shredder, that she is. Sapphire sits serenely among the songwriting class that is our generation's Laurel Canyon sound. Ac's music has a grasp on the cosmic side of Americana. She resides in Portland, but was once a desert denizen, and her southwestern exposure shows in the wide open, dusty, romantic sound of each song. She's the winner of Relix Sonic Showdown, a finalist in the John Lennon Songwriting Contest. She's shared the stage with artists like Son Little, long time friend Sunny War, and even been featured on a Shirley Manson (Garbage) song. Ac has played the Philadelphia Folk Festival, Treefort Music Fest. Even as this album is being released, she's finishing recording another with NewSong Music as the winner of their 2022 contest.

Sapphire makes a meta-modern version of Americana. Honoring the cross of hippies and cowboys that began the genre, embroidering thoughtful songwriting with cosmic consideration, emotional rock n roll, and western vista inspired folk rock. She’s capable of eviscerating emotions with harmonies and heated hard hitting love songs. Sapphire mines the same golden, glowing vein of Courtney Marie Andrews, Kassi Valazza, Madison Cunningham, or Mikaela Davis. She's a multi-instrumentalist and composer whose songs take the earnest torch of cosmic country and carry it forward, blazing a trail through a jaded, junk-future. Sapphire sings whole-heartedly, and makes cover-to-cover albums fit for long-play listening, sitting and smoking, soul searching, desert dazing.

The results of Sapphire's serendipitous wandering can be heard on the newer tracks on Dec. 32nd. On "Chaparral Bottom", her song for long-time friend and collaborator Victoria Williams. Sapphire romanticizes the Mojave, and the peripatetic and perilous lives of working musicians, with voice and warbling electric while accompanied by a pack of coyotes yelping in the distance.

You don't have to know what Sapphire is singing about for it to strike you. Her voice will penetrate your consciousness, your soul, the vibrations working from the inside out to shake tension and tumult loose. You'll weep, you'll cheer, you'll be won over. "Oblivion" sees a hail of harmonies like furies singing around an acoustic guitar. "bi" takes you for a ride: thrumming electric guitars sound like tread on hot tar, and Sapphire sings at the top of her lungs, as if to alone to her own radio.

Dec. 32nd comes at a point of great upheaval for the artist. Owed to her ability to make friends and fans wherever she goes, she can book a gig anywhere in the country at a moment's notice, and has friends and fans all over the US and Europe. At the same time, her father -her first manager, and her biggest fan, has been battling cancer for the last two years. Ac also feels the pull of time as a singer/songwriter who is twenty years into a music industry at its most volatile point in history. Still, she's cranking out work, on tour, recording constantly.  

Sapphire is at her mesmerizing best on songs like "Demon Sneeze", with just vocals and guitar sounding like a gorgeous chorus in a gargantuan church. A voice so strong that it seems to harmonize with its own echoes, Sapphire's songs are cathedrals unto themselves.

Each effort from Ac Sapphire is saturated in sentimentality, parts of these albums are views into the soul of the person. Sapphire has an ability to imbue an album with the ghosts of her past, effectively giving them a home. This saturates her work in sentimentality, making songs like "Weed Money" and "Stringbreaker" intensely personal, and poignant heartbreakers. Each song comes with stories about Sapphire's travels.  


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