With a new album, Little Oblivions, about to drop on Matador on February 26, Julien Baker is surfacing more and more these days. It's good to have her back. The Memphis native has gone from success to success simply by sticking to her unique blend of the cathartic confessional, from the intimate to the dramatic. Though her voice has always powerfully navigated both whispers and roaring melodies, it seems she's grown into her range even more as the years have gone by. That was especially in evidence last night, when she led her band through "Faith Healer," the album's first single, on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert.
Her band was in fine form as they rocked the song from the stage of the Exit/In in Nashville, and one can almost imagine hearing it ring out across Tennessee to Memphis as it went down. Singing from behind a keyboard, she made use of her all her vocal strengths in the song, which builds to a soaring high point as she wails, "Faith healer, come put your hands all over me/Snake oil dealer, I'll believe you if you make me feel something."
Recently, Baker could also be spied doing guitar duties in the service of Hayley Williams' Tiny Desk Concert last month, not to mention ringing in the holidays with her Spotify-only cover of an old Perry Como song, "A Dreamer's Holiday." Keep your eyes and ears peeled for more Baker sightings in the near future, and full coverage of her new album in the Memphis Flyer next month.