Since 1923 • For a greater Loyola

The Maroon

Since 1923 • For a greater Loyola

The Maroon

Since 1923 • For a greater Loyola

The Maroon

“Bewitched” review: Dreamy, jazzy pop for the hopeless romantic

Courtesy of Warner Chappell Music

Icelandic singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Laufey Lin Jónsdóttir, known by many as simply “Laufey,” has continued to showcase her talent over the course of recent years.

Through her music and social media presence, Laufey introduced generations both young and old to her unique sound, blending both folk-pop and classical jazz. Her music quickly gained international attention and popularity, and Laufey has since performed for audiences around the world. The artist’s first album, “Everything I Know about Love,” continues to stay relevant with listeners, with her single “Falling Behind” recently finding itself in the TikTok spotlight once more.

Laufey’s songs present the sounds of the violin, cello, and piano in a modern and more mainstream way, creating a style that many believe to be a modern form of jazz music; combined with whimsical singing and reflective lyrics, Laufey approaches topics like romance and grief while focusing on the hope that can be found within relationships. Bewitched, the artist’s latest LP, continues to explore these themes while introducing new sounds and more grandiose instrumentation. Laufey’s second album is a magical experience, one that is as entrancing as it is familiar.

The first track on the LP is called “Dreamer,” which tells the story of Laufey’s frustration as she remains determined to never give up on love. The smooth percussion and whimsical piano work with the artist’s lively vocals to create a great opening track. The song has a very soft but joyful vibe; it’s a catchy tune about the stress and excitement of searching for love. This is, of course, nothing new for Laufey, but “Dreamer” has a more vintage sound that makes it a standout among the album’s tracklist.

“Haunted” is the next notable song, bringing in a mysterious acoustic guitar and almost whispered vocals. This bossa-nova inspired piece talks about returning to a situation where you care about someone way more than they care about you. Laufey sings about this person’s presence, touch, and how he appears in the night only to disappear the following morning. The artist’s vocals reveal that she knows this person isn’t right for her, but she can’t help but welcome him back into her life repeatedly. This common scenario is accompanied by complex orchestration and melodies. This track is especially unique, as it is one of the only songs on the LP lacking that lighthearted sound. In fact, “Haunted” is far less dreamy than the other pieces on the album, and I think it certainly stands out because of the darker mood it conveys.

There is little to note about the following 3 pieces, for better and for worse. Many of the songs on “Bewitched” feel like an interlude; these songs all have similar sounds, but they all capture the yearning, fantastical feeling that the album represents. These tracks, while very similar, are all heartfelt, and Laufey’s lyricism is witty and catchy throughout the entire album.

The most spectacular song on “Bewitched” is track 7: “California and Me.” Accompanied by the brilliant Philharmonia Orchestra, Laufey mourns the end of a relationship and the literal distance it creates. After her partner leaves for New York to chase another, Laufey is only left with the city of Los Angeles. The artist is not defeated, but she feels foolish and is constantly reminded of the relationship every time she travels through the city. “California and Me” serves as a musical, Disney-like representation of an experience that many people go through at some point in their lives. The string and woodwind instruments make this song sound so much more like something you would hear in a fantasy musical, providing an excellent contrast to Laufey’s lyrics about modern-day California.

While the album’s second half is not as bombastic as “California and Me,” these songs provide a soft, dreamy ending that is very similar to how “Bewitched” begins. The LP’s title track, in particular, is a fitting finale to the album. Laufey sings about how falling in love with someone new can feel both familiar and foreign at the same time; this new person has cast a spell on the artist, making her feel the excitement of love in an entirely new way. This song is an appropriate way to end an album about giving love another shot despite the pain, sadness, and disappointment that may come with it.

Overall, Laufey’s “Bewitched” is a solid genre-blending album. The dreamy classical sounds are excellently juxtaposed with the more typical jazz-pop tracks. With consistent themes, fun and introspective lyricism, and magnificent instrumentation, this album is comfortably familiar at its worst and fantastically bewitching at its best.


“Bewitched” is now available on streaming platforms.

Illustration by Ariel Landry

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About the Contributor
June Fernandez
June Fernandez, Reviews Editor
June Fernandez currently serves as The Maroon's Reviews Editor. June is a junior majoring in computer science and is pursuing a career in software engineering. In their free time you can find them reading a science fiction novel, people watching, or browsing a local record store! June can be reached at [email protected].

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