Jenny Berkel Swims on “Just Like a River”

Warm and dark, soft with stabs of madness, poet and songwriter Jenny Berkel’s These Are the Sounds Left from Leaving is a cohesive collection of spare songs that bloom lushly with detail. The new album features contributions from critically acclaimed folk duo Kacy & Clayton, string arrangements by Colin Nealis (Andy Shauf) and for the first time, Jenny took on a production role, co-producing alongside Dan Edmonds and Ryan Boldt (The Deep Dark Woods). 

Exploring the openness and non-linear nature of time, “Just like a River” feels like a mellow meditation. A recreation of moments where small, specific reveries gave way to more sprawling contemplation–but in an appreciably peaceful and illuminative way.

Each song unfolds like a widening web of poetic associations, narrated by nostalgic piano, pondering strings, glittering guitars—and Jenny’s hauntingly immersive vocals. At times, they end with an unravelling, the music splintering apart into disintegration like a lingering open question. “The songs themselves are a study of proximity, bringing big fears into small spaces,” Jenny reflects. “They’re intimate examinations of a world that often overwhelms.” 

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