Raine Hamilton – Night Sky

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By Matt Harrison

Soft violin gently starts this album with the soothing hum of singer Raine Hamilton over top it. Before you can fall into the melody, the violin turns to a jagged sort of snap and the story of Night Sky begins to unfurl. As the same song, “Starlight”, carries on, the acoustic folk sound offers vibes akin to wandering through a forest, the intervention of light a hopeless wish. This album takes you through the thicket of harsh and valuable lessons Raine Hamilton came to learn during the time she spent writing it as well as a close look at what is most important to her.

Just as it seems the darkness of the first track may be overwhelming, “Lift Me Up” shines through like a warmth radiating from a soul so pure it wants nothing more than to remind you how strong and brilliant you are. This song rings soft but powerful -a theme found throughout the album- as if written by Love incarnate. It offers what a mother, a lover, or anyone who truly loves you will when it seems as though your entire world has begun burning around you. For Hamilton, she wrote these inspiring words for her former self. “If I could tell myself then what I know now,” Hamilton wrote in a brief synopsis of the song on her website, “I would say: “You are beautiful, you are strong. You are so, so good.”

Other songs worth noting include “Robin Hood” and “Everyday,” the latter being a beautiful, adventurous instrumental piece. The second to last song, “Broken Plate”, has what is among the best moments of the album. It speaks of finding wholeness and sanctity of self after a relationship has fallen apart. Hamilton sings “My heart is not your harvest/ Not yours to reap and sow/ Not even if you’re taking what you think I owe/ I owe you nothing.”

As the albums ends and the music falls away, it will take a moment for you to fully step back into the present. Slowly, you’ll again become cognizant of the traffic around you, vehicular or otherwise. This album listens the way a good book reads; with conflict, resolution, and a protagonist to inspire hope and happiness throughout. Once you’ve heard Night Sky you’ll have heard Hamilton serenade with her voice, her violin, and her guitar, each dying her sleeves with the best and most honest parts of herself for all to see.

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