Most people will not open the door to you during their darkest moments, but Keaton Henson has on Dear. Dear is his debut album that details the painful trials of a breakup. Henson is exposed and raw. Love stripped, a gaping void forces him to scratch at the surface of so many questions, as he wander through memories, emotions shifting from pain, to anger and eventually, remorse. When Dear debuted on DIS Henson shared a note:
i am so sorry that they can hear these songs.
Like his note, Henson writes directly and simply on Dear. From the album’s start to finish, he details cathartically his dealings with the breakup. Beginning with “Charron,” Henson buries his relationship singing “There will be coins on my eyes,” his pain boils to anger as he concludes, “And I ain’t no Hercules.” Resolve sets in on “Sarah Minor” where he admits “I feel like you know me better than most, in spite of this, we’ll always be close.” Those lonely nights in an empty bed spent remembering “your small hands in the palm of mine, The fact they’re good at making, Miss your sitting up incessantly, And the fact you’re always waking in the night, night” leave him caught in the past on “Small Hands.” A glimmer of hope returns on “Now That You’d Even Notice” as he calls for her to hear his songs and change her mind. Concluding in the un-fairytale like fashion that’s life with the ironically dark titled track “Party Song” with Henson singing, “This is where you wanted it to be, And it’s a God damn shame, and I can’t see your face anymore.”
This is one the sweetest and most moving albums I’ve heard in years.