The Simple Fear

Pittsburgh singer-songwriter Brooke Annibale has an uncanny way with words, and her latest release is further proof of this. The Simple Fear's primary theme is how we allow fear to control our lives, and Annibale gets right to it, tackling the notion of how reality often doesn't match up with our dreams on the opener, “Like the Dream of It.” But she subtly goes on the offensive after this, like on the acoustic folk-pop track “Go,” with its middle finger to fear in the line: “Keeping me safe will only keep me from growing.” And her confidence soars on “Patience” when she sings, “If I've learned anything in this life/It's that the things that scare you the most/Are always worth the time.” Annibale continues seamlessly melding together her folk leanings with the more experimental electric sound she began playing with on her last release—2013's Words in Your Eyes—with her smoky vocals as the perfect accompaniment. The Simple Fear is an absolute gem.