Allison Russell, “Outside Child”
An early contender for album of the year, Allison Russell shines in her soulful, thought-provoking opus that’s “Outside Child.” From her ode to Canada in the opening number, “Montreal” to the stand-out track, “Nightflyer,” the album skillfully tackles abuse and trauma and transforms it into triumph and an album of empowerment. Russell, an accomplished poet, has a way with words in the song, “The Runner” she sings, Oh, I had to sing, to sing, to sing/From the western sea/To the old country/Oh, I had to bleed, to bleed, to bleed/’Til his poison left my veins/Left me,” these are the type of thought-provoking lyrics that distinguish the singer-songwriter. Her vocals are stellar and her talent is undeniable. For this reason and many more Allison Russell’s “Outside Child” is our pick for Best Album of 2021.