Her Skin, aka Italian singer-songwriter Sara Ammendolia, beautifully bares her soul through the nine songs of her new debut album, ‘I Started A Garden’. In an album that took almost three years to complete, it is clear from the first song, ‘Bones’, to the very last ‘It’s Hard to Breathe/ I Started a Garden’, that every second is laced with an eager intensity of pure, heart-felt emotion.
The opener, ‘Bones’, introduces us to the delicate and raw life experiences of Her Skin with soft vocals accompanied by elegant arpeggio on guitar and a rhythmic beat. From the outset, the lyrics delve into the honesty that you can expect from this album. She asks, “Would you see me differently, if I showed every part of me?”, offering the listener full access to herself and her journey.
When speaking about the inspiration behind the new album, Her Skin explains, “I am aware that I’m not the same person I was when I started working on this record, but that’s what makes it so special to me. It’s an album about the lessons I learned, the people I loved, the time it took me to heal.” This is noticeable on each and every track as she traces her experiences via this music platform. In her third track ‘Older’, she even takes accountability for her part in a situation. She states, “I’m sorry if I hurt you but we did this whole thing wrong”, as she realises her mistakes, apologises and closes that chapter of her life.
Throughout the album, there is a strong sense of soul-searching steeped with sadness, regret, but also an overwhelming feeling of healing and cleansing that encourages the listener to embark on their own self-renewal. The genuinely honest portrayal of life experiences, whether that be through the upbeat track two, ‘Confident’, or the more mournful-toned ‘Forget Me’, presents a powerful and true reflection of Her Skin’s innermost thoughts.
Concluding the album is the track, ‘It’s Hard to Breathe/ I Started a Garden’, which perfectly concentrates on Her Skin’s tender vocals and fragile, but brave start of her healing process. You come away realising that this is just the beginning and can’t help but already envision a second album of the next part of this process in years to come. The soft vocals are heart wrenching and encapsulating, providing the ultimate cliff-hanger that leaves you in reflective bliss.