Beyond making an early case for 2024’s best title, What An Enormous Room finds Torres approaching full rock star mode and making a confident declaration of ambition. “The me of yesterday hadn’t a clue!” she proclaims on the opener to her sixth album over a marching, metallic guitar riff. “Babe, my star’s just on the rise.”
Over the past ten years, the independent musician (known as Mackenzie Scott) has released her debut album, featuring quiet yet emotionally charged songs. Since then, she has incorporated more theatrics and expanded her musical style, showcasing the intensity of her powerful and commanding voice. One of her recent singles, “Collect,” displays all of these elements as she confronts a weak opponent over dramatic piano and intense guitar. In the track “Wake to Flowers,” she celebrates her newfound self-confidence with her partner in the glow of morning light. The drums and bass guitar join in, creating a sense of triumphant joy as she exclaims, “Is this really my life? I’m surprised!”
The record’s more delicate songs, like the gloomy “Artificial Limits,” seem surprisingly hesitant in comparison to the bold and confident singles. This is unexpected because Torres is known for her versatility, but “Jerk Into Joy” is strangely reserved despite its emotionally charged storyline. While “What An Enormous Room” falls short of fulfilling Torres’s promise of creating a stadium-sized sound, she successfully combines form and ambition in the standout track “I Got the Fear.” This haunting ballad, which explores the struggle with sudden panic, is powerfully intimate and could captivate any audience.