One year ago almost to the day, Vanessa Carlton released her last album, Love Is An Art. Just as spring and lockdown were both beginning, Vanessa’s album offered an ethereal respite. Now, commemorating its one-year anniversary, Vanessa has just put out a deluxe version of the record. In addition to the original 11 songs, the new release also includes the previously unheard song “Break To Save” and two demos.
“Break To Save” has a lot of personality from its very beginning. It has a funky groove and warm sound as Vanessa sings about having the power to leave someone and redefine herself. It’s an empowering song wrapped up in a mellifluously winding melody. This is actually an incredible song, and it’s a surprise it didn’t make it onto the original release of Love Is An Art. It’s an instant standout on the album and in Vanessa’s full back catalogue.
In a statement, Vanessa described the meaning behind “Break To Save”:
“Break to Save” is about being brave enough to face the pain that will allow you to grow. It’s about that moment when you realize you can’t change a parent or friend or lover, and as hard as it may be, you must break ties in order to save yourself, or to set a boundary that you need.
Two weeks ago, fans got to hear the demo of “I Know You Don’t Mean It,” itself a highlight on the original album. This demo version is stripped down, with only Vanessa’s piano and vocals, yet it sounds just as magical and sweet.
Now we can also hear the demo of album opener “I Can’t Stay The Same.” Rather than building on crescendoing drums and eerie synths, Vanessa sings against a backdrop of acoustic guitar. Her vocals are heavy with reverb, as on the studio version, but here the chorus ends with swirling piano rather than the fuzzy bass synth we’re used to. An extended outro makes this recording a two full minutes longer than the studio version, yet it doesn’t feel protracted at all.
Listen to “Break To Save,” the “I Can’t Stay The Same” demo, and the “I Know You Don’t Mean It” demo in the deluxe release of Love Is An Art below:
Love Is An Art
Love Is An Art came first out in March 2020. It includes Vanessa’s singles “Future Pain,” “The Only Way To Love,” “Miner’s Canary,” “Die, Dinosaur,” and “Back To Life,” plus studio versions of songs she’d previously performed live: “Love Is An Art,” “I Know You Don’t Mean It,” and “Salesman.” The album also includes a track called “Patience,” which Vanessa had first previewed back in 2012.
While we’re revisiting Love Is An Art, you can also read our track-by-track review of the original release here.
We are completely loving “Break To Save” and the two demos. Be sure to listen to all of the deluxe version of Love Is An Art, because the album is amazing. Keep checking back here for all the latest Vanessa Carlton music news.