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Amber Carly Williams - EP Review: 21 Roses

04 Dec 2023 // A review by Lucy Gray
From starring in Pop and R&B on NZ show ‘Popstars’, to self-releasing her indie-pop EP 21 Roses, the Christchurch-based musician Amber Carly Williams has really found her feet. With her new EP 21 Roses she has completely rebranded her musical persona. She’s started afresh with this EP and her discography has had out with the old and in with the new, and this EP is the only feature.

However, it far makes up for any lost music, and in bounties. 21 Roses sees a vulnerable and personal side of Williams and her music. The word that comes to mind when listening to this EP is intentional. She has clear influences that run in the same musical circles, and these influences run through each and every song, while balancing her own personal flare.

“Melancholic. Reflective. Nostalgic.” This is how Williams described her sound in three words to Tearaway Mag, and I think this stunningly sums up this EP. It’s delicate but contradicts itself with the rough-around-the-edges topics it covers.

Kids On The Internet to me draws influences from Boygenius, particularly their more recent work. Her delicate vocals and harmonies are carefully placed over sometimes tense melodies. As the song continues the vocals turn rawer, and emotional and hold more power. Specifically in the bridge, her vocals break through and perfectly express the song's thematic complexities.

Her song Write It On The Walls in the bridge especially is reminiscent of Julien Baker, and exemplifies that distorted guitar, pure vocal power and raw emotion that breaks through after verses of sweet vocals and guitar.

Amber Carly Williams breaks the mold on music in Aotearoa, and she brings something unique to the Christchurch music industry. At a first glance her music might seem familiar but at a second listen it feels hand-picked, crafted and intentionally beautiful.


About Amber Carly Williams

Otautahi-based singer-songwriter Amber Carly Williams possesses a rare voice, one that instantly steals the attention of any audience and, paired now with an exciting new body of work, is set to take her place amongst the upper echelon of New Zealand's indie-pop scene.

In late 2023, Amber will release 21 Roses; a highly-anticipated EP backed by NZ On Air's Development Programme that showcases an artist with an expressive maturity beyond her years.

Recorded with an entirely Otautahi-based team, led by producer Terence O'Connor (Blue Nude), its sound recalls the likes of Julien Baker, Lizzy McAlpine and The Japanese House, placing Amber Carly Williams amongst a local cohort of wahine indie artists that includes Alisa Xayalith, Alayna and Georgia Lines.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Amber Carly Williams


21 Roses
Year: 2023
Type: EP

Other Reviews By Lucy Gray

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31 Oct 2023 // by Lucy Gray
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