When Lindi Ortega went in search of some quiet last year, the award-winning artist was pleasantly surprised to find a voice she hadn’t heard in some time – her own. Amid sparse, atmospheric production, it’s precisely this voice – a combination of Ortega’s fatalistic perspective expressed with her evocative soprano – that grips your attention on a brand new EP, Til the Goin’ Gets Gone.
A dogged resilience permeates this unadorned collection – three originals and a cover of Townes Van Zandt’s Waiting ‘Round To Die. The songs are the hard-won spoils of an internal war with words that struck after an extended stretch of touring, addressed in the EP’s title track about the detours and ditches that a traveling musician faces.
What a Girl’s Gotta Do, a song that is the silver lining of an otherwise dreadful date, explores the gritty pragmatism of making ends meet. Alongside the title track, this song offers a second metaphor about artistic life that strengthens the EP’s overall sense of resolve. Ortega’s somber rendition of Waiting ‘Round to Die, acknowledges a personal debt – her recent discovery of the legendary songwriter’s music is what finally cured her writer’s block. The closer, Final Bow, came when Ortega assumed she only had one song left in her. “I thought I had to quit music but I wanted to leave gracefully,” she says. “But then I decided to get up and sing some more.” As a whole, this statement captures the essence of Ortega’s new EP – it’s about dusting off, gutting it out, stepping up for another round.