Photo: Pooneh Ghana
As the summer season begins, many of us are flocking outdoors due to high-temperature forecasts and the endless pursuit of good vibes. Every excursion needs a playlist, however, and fortunately Atlanta singer-songwriter Faye Webster returns to us this month with her fourth record I Know I’m Funny haha, an exceptional masterclass in clever songwriting and polished indie-folk sentiment. It's been a minute since we've last heard from her, but luckily Webster's latest effort is so heartwarming and tender that it feels like she never left.
If you've listened to a Webster record before, then I Know I'm Funny haha should serve as a familiar reintroduction to what makes her such a captivating artist. Her signature blend of downtempo pop-flavored indie-folk tunes are meticulously crafted invocations of high-dose emotion, and thankfully Webster doubles down on her strengths on her newest offering. Webster's voice is just as dulcet as ever, and her vocal performances leave a trail of delicately sentimental poetry as she navigates through 11 acoustic-led mixes.
I Know I'm Funny haha is a record best consumed while laying in the tall grass, admiring fluffy clouds and chalcedonic skies. It's a collection of melancholic, trauma-scarred daydreams that couple with feelings of euphoric romance, crippling loneliness, and everything in-between. Webster's writing practically bleeds out of your speakers, as she writes like she's been nearly crushed under the burdensome weight of austere existentialism and love's many highs and lows. Even the name of the record (and the eponymous track it’s named after) carries a slight hint of tension, like a strange assertive moment during an episode of self-doubt.
Tracks like "A Stranger" and "Kind Of" are bittersweet exercises of songwriting genius, where every sacrosanct moment is complicated by saccharine euphoria or dreadful insecurity. Webster is far from alone in her self-doubt, however as lines like "Ask what you need / I'll tell you everything that I know / I'm hoping you won't ever leave / 'Cause there's nowhere else I want to go" are enough to make you either cry into your pillow or run outside and celebrate being alive.
If there's one thing I love to credit Webster with, is that she seems to continuously collaborate with people that some may view as traditionally way out of her own artistic lane. We've seen her create tracks with artists like Ethereal and Father, and on I Know I'm Funny haha she links up with Japanese singer-songwriter mei ehara on "Overslept," a track best described as the feeling of spending all day sleeping next to somebody you love.
Though some of these tracks are not exactly the high-octane mood lifters one might turn to during a long road trip or a hike, I Know I'm Funny haha is perfect for instilling a more thoughtful and nostalgic energy into the time you spend alone or with others. The mixes are lowkey and downtempo, and Webster's singing feels more pristine and delicate to the touch than it's ever been, so consider this the hazy indie-folk album to commence your summer season.
With the recent release of I Know I'm Funny haha and a spring tour currently on the way, Webster is quickly establishing herself as one of modern music's most gifted songwriting talents. From her airy vocal register to her affinity for writing heartfelt and vulnerable indie anthems, Webster effortlessly astounds in every regard.
Listen to I Know I'm Funny haha below: