Ever since I first saw Irene Diaz sing in a Venice California church almost 5 years ago, I have been smitten by her ability to blend power, love, joy and pain into songs in a way that few in modern musical history have ever accomplished. Her voice transcends any words of description; it is pure emotion. Her songwriting is the most personal poetry possible, and yet is it completely universal. She is on a level of her own. Her newest song “Another Observer” raises that level even higher to a point where she stands out as the simply best.
Over the past 5 years her voice, her lyrics, and her presentation have changed and simplified – and grown more powerful. Diaz has always been able to transmit libraries of emotion in a few lines, but with each new song her power has expanded so that every word, note, and glance up from the keyboard becomes part of a pathway into your consciousness. “Another Observer” has burned a pathway into my soul that will never fade. In “Another Observer” Diaz has allowed me to remember and finally understand somethings that happened in my life decades ago.
Part of this magic is her voice. You can’t measure Diaz’s voice by its range or octaves or vibrato – you take those for granted. The only metrics that apply to her are impact, emotional resonance, levels of penetration into your heart. In “Another Observer”, those are off the charts; she distills her words and music to communicate the pain of the ruins of a broken relationship and the fear of what comes next with the fetal curl of sadness and the sharp ache of love. She sings, You go/And I stay/Day in after everyday: nine short words that tell a life’s story both past and future. That is the talent of Irene Diaz, the ability to draw you in and hold you with commanding simplicity in lyrics and music. No one else can do that.
Irene took some time off since her last album, recharging in Mexico, recording and just living. We missed her, but knew the wait would be worth it. It has been with the release of “Another Observer” which was Executive-produced during this break by the Latin Grammy-winning Carla Morrison, Diaz, and her long-time partner Carolyn Cardoza, working with the brilliant production brothers Alejandro and Demian Jiménez.
“Another Observer” stands on its own as the best thing Diaz has ever done and one of the best songs in today’s music world. And even more promising, it is the first song to be released from the upcoming album, Lovers & Friends in 2020. I can hardly wait, but in the meantime, “Another Observer” is on replay in my playlist.
“Another Observer”, released via Cosmica Records and distributed by Ingrooves in 2019 is available on iTunes, Spotify and at https://www.irenediazmusic.com