Katie Boeck explores her self-worth on ‘Calico’


Recommended Tracks: “Best Kind of Love”, “Endgame”, “Calico (Lonely Love)”
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The world has lent itself to Katie Boeck very openly, allowing her to translate all of its wonders and mysteries into her music. The singer-songwriter has played dive bars, lived on mountains, traveled India with a Bollywood band, and performed on Broadway, all the while taking note of the way these adventures should be shared. After presenting them in her debut album, Speaking of You, Katie continued to explore, love, and connect, gathering enough material for her sophomore album, Calico. On Calico, Katie focuses on personal and public relationship evolution, specifically how the search for outward love turns into a need for inward love. Through this release, she sends a special message about self-worth that is just as powerful as her adventures.

Throughout Calico, Katie tries to find a happy medium between the outward love she wants and the outward love she gets. On tracks like “Bittersweet” and “Until We Try,” she toys with the possibility of moving on from someone who is not putting in the work. She wants and knows that she deserves more, but does not want to give up so quickly. When she sings, “It’s a once in a lifetime love and it’s passing us by” on “Until We Try,” we understand that the love she wants is worth fighting for. We also understand that love is very important to her, and we can hear this through her vocals on “Best Kind of Love,” where her voice takes on an open and warm quality. She gets lost in the feeling of love on this track, hoping that it will find her someday. This longing comes through again on “Endgame,” where Katie places more value on the idea of someone she wants over who is actually in her life. Over a tropical, drum-driven production that separates it from other tracks on the album, she sings, “I just want to talk to you, honey / Give you a run for your money, but you’re running away,” sensing that this person is not her endgame after all.

As Katie evaluates the love she receives on the outside, she adjusts the love she has for herself on the inside. A soft and smooth offering, “Over Again” is about learning from your past, accepting it, and moving forward. She mentions, “Time is a cruel, cruel thing,” but she will not let it bring her down. This theme of persevering can also be found on “Subside,” where Katie touches on anxiety and depression. The gentle sounds of the piano bring comfort and encouragement as she sings, “Tell me how to reconcile the things I thought I knew” and “Don’t run / Don’t hide / Every broken heartbeat / We’ll take / In stride.” On the more pop-oriented “Calico (Lonely Love),” she realizes that her self-worth truly comes from within, preferring the way she views herself over the random views, likes, mentions, and follows of others.

Ultimately, Katie discovers that she does not need to let go of outward love to make room for inward love, or the reverse. On the closing track, “While I’m Still Human,” she appreciates all the work she has put towards loving herself but still wants to receive love from someone else. The more she opens up, the more the track opens up with her, the stripped-back beginning eventually turning into a full production. Knowingly, she sings, “Here in the darkness / All that remains is / The love in my heart and / The blood in my veins / No more foolish delusions / So come to me while I’m still human,” ready to connect on all levels.

In the end, Calico is a nice step away from the chaos of connections and relationships. Katie gives us eight reflective tracks and three brief instrumentals that calm and rejuvenate, taking listeners on a journey. She made sure that the music did not overwhelm the lyrics, more or less sticking with the same five instruments from track to track. In doing so, the lyrics are able to drive home the messages and the themes of the album, which focus on internal and external love and acceptance. The instrumentals she gives us in the form of “Prelude,” “Interlude,” and “Over Again (Reprise),” do well to enhance these themes instead of distracting or filling up space. Overall, Katie gives us a valuable, powerful album with messages that listeners can take with them wherever they go.

You can listen to Calico on platforms like Spotify and Apple Music.

Keep up with Katie Boeck: Facebook // Instagram // Twitter // YouTube // TikTok // Website


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