Kiley Lotz has a voice like a bell, one that holds on to its strength and resonance even when she’s singing
of knotty emotions like those that dominate her second full-length as Petal. Magic Gone opens
with the anxious-musician chronicle “Better Than You,” which frames the
Scranton-born songwriter’s rock-life zingers (“You stay out so late/Just
to build connection/They say, ‘Hey, man you were great,'” she eye-rolls
at the outset) in fuzzed-out guitars and
rumbling basslines. One by one, though, the effects fall away as Lotz
works what sounds like her last nerve – “God, will they love me if I am
honest?” she wails over an acoustic guitar on “Carve” – while grappling
with adulthood and loss.
which closes out the album, is a happy ending of sorts, opening with a
pillowy piano arpeggio. As Lotz slowly arrives at the realization that
goodbyes can be gestures of love, an instrumental clamor rises up around
her, propelling her toward wherever life might
take her next.