FEATURED FIND: NASHVILLE BASED NATALIE MADIGAN IS ELECTRIFYING ON POWERFUL EP “PUT THE LIGHT BACK”
Photo by Daniel Chaney
For aspiring artists, little is more nerve-wracking than releasing a sophomore project. If Natalie Madigan was nervous while creating her stunning sophomore effort Put The Light Back, she hid it well - Put The Light Back is confident, vulnerable and everything you could possibly want in a pop record.
I have a complex relationship with TikTok, especially when it comes to music discovery. Part of me feels overwhelmed by just how oversaturated the app is with aspiring artists and underwhelmed by the artists I come across. That being said, when I come across a diamond of an artist in the rough of the ever-growing platform, I get a rush like no other. If an artist captures my attention, I forget about the hours of searching and disappointment that lead me to this artist, because I finally found someone making music that immediately affected me to my core. This is exactly what happened when I stumbled across Natalie Morgan on TikTok.
The video above was my introduction to Madigan. I was outside in the sweltering heat of Philadelphia in July when I saw this video, and got full body chills within the first ten seconds of listening to her perform her song “Remember Why You Fell In Love”. The ascending melody paired with the emotion-filled belt at the end of each line stung in the best way possible. For someone so young, Madigan oozes emotion like someone who lived a life full of every emotion under the sun. Her lyrics are the same way. My personal favorites are, “We were going 99 down pacific highway / Said if I’m going to die I’m going to do it my way”.
After watching this video on repeat hundreds of times, I knew I needed more and had to emotionally prepare myself for the worst. What if Madigan was just an insanely talented singer-songwriter who didn’t have any music released? What if she was just posting videos of her singing for fun and had no intention of pursuing music full time? What if she only posted music to SoundCloud? These were the questions I had to ask myself before clicking on her TikTok profile. The joy I felt once I realized she is an artist with a lot of music already released and is not just a hobby singer was indescribable. Better yet, she released an entire EP just months prior to when I came across her on TikTok.
NATALIE MADIGAN - PUT THE LIGHT BACK EP TEASER
Put the Light Back is an astonishingly cohesive and advanced body of work. A project whose central theme is self love and empowerment, Put the Light Back is the sonic embodiment of Madigan’s journey through love, pain, grief, growth and success. The EP’s title track, which is also its opening track, is an outstanding introduction to what is to come in this project. A combination of retro pop drum lines (think Taylor Swift’s 1989), angelic layered vocals (think Lana Del Rey) and Madigan’s stellar range, this song demands your attention. In an interview with American Songwriter, “Put the Light Back” (the song) is, “...is actually [Madigan] speaking to all [of her] struggles and telling them—and [herself]—that [she’s] in control of [her] reality”.
NATALIE MADIGAN - HAPPY WHEN
This theme continues into the second song on the EP entitled “Happy When,” which may be my favorite on the EP. A manifestation of the success that is inevitably coming Madigan’s way, this song cut me deep. Strings, the whisper of a kick drum and a piano line accompany Madigan’s layered, angelic vocals for the first half of the song. Later in the track, a high hat is introduced, the tempo changes a little bit, and the song shifts in theme from personal success to how chasing success interferes with personal relationships. Natalie, if it makes you feel any better - I am also working on this. It is tough out here being a girl boss.
Natalie Madigan’s second project Put the Light Back was released on April 30, 2021 via Tone Tree Music and is available to stream wherever you listen to music. You can keep up with Madigan on her Instagram and TikTok, where she frequently posts videos of her singing acoustic versions of her music.
Charlotte Stack lives in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where she studies Music Business in Drexel University’s Music Industry Program. When she isn’t working, Charlotte is most likely cuddling with her dog, Jade or at a show.