Fleetingly beautiful, translucent, and rare: Liaden Zane’s EP Riddled in Truth is pure faerie folklore.
Like peering into the pages of a young woman’s diary, the music of Liaden Zane is intimate and confessional. We take a step even further into the clandestine mind of Zane as she offers up more insights surrounding her majestic EP Riddled in Truth, track-by-track.
Steeped in feminine fragility and a worldly sense of womanhood, Liaden Zane is delicate folk and powerful pop blended into one. Each song on her EP is another facet of romantic maturity. She adopts the wildness of ’90s alt-rock and weaves a tapestry of poetic brilliance. Her profound grasp of curly lyricism is clear in her language, verbatim.
Flickering Lights was the first real song I’d ever written. It was unintentional but it accidentally showed me the magic of songwriting. I wrote it when I was 16 and I was in the throws of my first adolescent crush. I was so consumed by the adrenaline of it all, I actually found it hard to fall asleep some nights.
On one of these nights, I took out my phone and drained some of my thoughts into the Notes app. Then about a week later, I was playing guitar and remembered the poem I had written and thought, “Hey, why don’t I add some chords to it and see how it sounds?” Then I wrote the full song out and I was spinning that I had just made music. My crush didn’t last very long at all, but the buzz I’ve felt for songwriting always stayed.
Riddled in Truth
Like Flickering Lights, Riddled in Truth is consumed by the adrenaline of a new feeling. But, instead, this song doesn’t have the same naïvety. Riddled in Truth is about the constant tightrope battle between how you feel and what your pride will let you show. When either of these are suppressed is where tension starts to grow and it’s that pull that drives this song.
That feeling is a bundle of intrigue, frustration and vulnerability and the electricity that it generates was channelled through these moody guitar sounds and Gaelic tones. Where Flickering Lights very much feels like a sunny frolic through a forest, this song is definitely when the sun has set.
Not So Long Ago
Not So Long Ago was very fun for me to write as it was the first song I’d written that broke away from the standard verse-chorus-bridge-chorus formula. It stays on that static guitar strumming pattern, whilst everything else slowly starts to build up into the bridge where everything just breaks.
To me, it always felt like ocean swells contracting and releasing, until finally at the bridge, there is just a massive release. This song tiptoes on the feeling of disappointment and the stages of it before you finally reach acceptance and contentment. The bridge is where all of this naïve hope just shatters and explodes as reality sinks in, that sometimes, as much as you want to believe that something means more, it just means what it means.
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There’s a running theme of the ocean in this song as well. Not So Long Ago is more focussed on the ocean itself, and getting lost and consumed in a feeling, whereas Tides is about its ever-changing nature. This song is about how our feelings can be fleeting, and they move like the tide: coming and going.
Specifically, it’s about being on the receiving end, when the tide has gone out and you’re getting used to no longer feeling the water beneath your feet. This song starts when the tide is in, and as it progresses, you can see it stretch back into the ocean gradually until by the end, you are very much separated from something you used to be so immersed in.
Skeleton Vows is very much about reclaiming yourself and feeling reborn in a way. Symbolically, I wrote it when I had just finished high school and I think you can kind of hear through it that it’s about growing up and cottoning on to a lot of the harsher truths in the world: the core one of this song being that words are cheap.
A skeleton vow is a hollow promise; something that is meant to mean so much but ultimately just falls through. Musically, it was so exciting for me, as I was using my voice a bit different to the rest of the songs on this EP. A lot of my alternative ’90s influences kind of seeped through this track and blended with some really Gaelic sounds which helped to harbour a lot of the angst in the lyrics.
Immerse yourself in the richly metaphorical and emotive EP Riddled in Truth below: