CARMEN MCLEAN Returns From A Hiatus In Beautiful Fashion With Newest Single ‘The Space’

Published on 24 February 2023 at 17:18

Words: Max Bradfield


Leeds-based singer songwriter Carmen McLean is back with a new tune and it’s a truly thoughtful piece of music. After first listen, it's clear this may resonate with a lot of listeners. 


Admittedly, ‘The Space’ is a declaration of vulnerability, exploring estrangement and solitude. Pressing play, this is obvious. The homely velvety acoustic tones and Carmen’s soft voice welcome the listener to a snapshot of reflection – as this one portrays a well needed moment to think in the hubbub of a modern struggling relationship.


Both lyrically and instrumentally, this song hits home. The song presents the notion of ‘The Space’ between two lovers growing and this is excellently implied. To me, ‘a stranger in my house, that I can’t live without’ is the pick of the bunch. Poetic and direct, lyrics hit the audience with initial raw emotion in their own right before the music itself piles on more to really kick you in the feels. 


The lo-fi fuzz of the acoustic guitar is like the statement within the track, unavoidable and bare. The beautifully flowing violin parts (played by McLean herself) are the icing on top. If this were to be directed at a certain individual, it would be crushing. This form of reflection and dressing down is likely more effective than a loud berating. There’s a longing gesture, yet also a subtlety in delivery. Carmen has effectively captured a slice of delicacy and fragility and then projected it in a way that may run parallel with the sentiment of ‘I’m not angry, just disappointed’. 


A bit about the artist: 

Influenced by artists such as Leith Ross and Madi Diaz, Carmen has a distinctly refreshing homestyle sound, with intricate vocals and stripped back arrangements. A classically trained violinist, Carmen records and arranges her own violin parts at home in the creative cocoon of her bedroom. With the help of a backing band, Carmen’s music is layered with modest yet uplifting harmonies, and heart-tugging vulnerability.


Carmen has received backing from the likes of BBC Introducing and Amazing Radio. She’s also performed at festivals throughout the UK including Boudica Festival and Long Division Festival. With tracks like these loaded in the chamber, we could certainly be hearing more of Carmen McLean in the near future.


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