Track by Track is a recurring feature series in which artists share the story behind every song on their latest release. Today, Pearla breaks down her new album, Oh Glistening Onion, The Nighttime Is Coming.
Brooklyn-based artist Pearla (born Nicole Rodriguez) has released her debut album, Oh Glistening Onion, The Nighttime Is Coming today, February 10th, via Spacebomb Records. Her transcendent storytelling weaves together an indie-folk record that finds strength in its vulnerability.
The mystical album title refers to the layers of a symbolic onion. “I think what I mean is, there are endless layers to everything, and you don’t have to get to the bottom of it all before you find peace and rest your head at night,” Rodriguez tells Consequence. “You can live with the questions and the uncertainty. It’s also a reminder that all of this is temporary.”
Like the hypothetical onion in the title, we are meant to live within the album’s intricate layers rather than peel them back. The dreamlike instrumentals and expressive vocals immerse the audience in a fantasy painted with wonder and sorrow, and she seamlessly guides listeners through dense crescendos transitioning into sparse acoustic moments with masterful restraint. “All the lights are left on and I’m trying to receive you but I’m only beautiful when I’m alone,” sings Rodriguez in “With.”
Pearla effortlessly builds off the sound she established on her 2019 EP, Quilting and Other Activities. She embodies the eloquent narrative stylings of artists like Adrienne Lenker and Joni Mitchell while also drawing inspiration from writers Virginia Woolf and Mary Oliver.
After the release of the album, Pearla will be playing a hometown show at Public Records in Brooklyn on February 25th, which will be followed by a performance at this year’s SXSW festival.
Listen to Oh Glistening Onion and read Pearla’s Track by Track breakdown of the album below.