Review Summary: Lights shows that she is more than capable of completely changing genres to further her musical career and take herself into uncharted territories perfectly.
As an artist that appeared on several Bring Me The Horizon songs, one would expect Lights to completely and utterly suck given how bad so many of that bands songs have been over they ears. You would not be entirely wrong in figuring to just stay away from any artist associated with Bring Me The Horizon despite the fact that Lights appeared on one of the bands most solid songs, Don't Go. However this is not the attitude to be taking regarding electronic pop artist Lights, as both her studio albums to date have been more than listenable releases with some really solid material on them, and that is merely the tip of the iceberg when it comes to good releases from Lights. Many who have heard her stuff are unaware that she produced an acoustic rock EP featuring renditions of four of her songs on top of a cover song that is region specific. On the version I possess it features a cover of The Who's Behind Blue Eyes.
Opening things up is River, a song that made an appearence on her debut album The Listening. This straight away shows the minimalistic approach taken to the recording of this release instrumentally, with all the instruments being stripped down and leaving the listener to focus purely on Lights' voice. In place of the little girls voice that was present for the most part on The Listening is a fully matured, powerful, soul-filled voice and it sounds absolutely fantastic. Whilst her vocals on The Listening were brilliant to listen to and are somewhat unique, on here she really manages to push herself even further and poured her heart into the vocal work on this release. The acoustic rendition of River manages to top the version off her debut release which is considered to be one of her best songs, and is a nice place to start off when it comes to this release if you are a little sceptical as to whether Lights can pull off an acoustic EP.
The best song on this EP is the version of Saviour that appears on here. The original was good enough, kicking off The Listening in emphatic fashion but on here it stands out as one of the best songs ever recorded. The song sounds on here as though it was originally intended to be an acoustic song, with Lights masterfully handling the chorus and holding the song together with her voice despite the aforementioned lack of anything special happening with the acoustic guitar. There are a few chords in the background and Lights singing her lungs out over the top and somehow this manages to sound absolutely amazing and so much more soulful than her full albums ever did. The cover of The Who is also handled very well and transitions to acoustic rather well, although never coming quite close to beating out the original. It is a nice cover with Lights' vocals sounding perfect for this version of the song in place of the original Roger Daltrey vocals and is a good change and interesting to listen to after hearing the original.
The short running time of this EP is really the only bad thing about it and perhaps that the choice of doing February Air was a little misguided, whereas she could have taken something like Quiet and done even better with it. This EP clocks in at just over seventeen minutes and is a refreshing blast of acoustic rock from one of the most talented vocalists of today but unfortunately is just too short to ever leave any form of lasting impact. Saviour and the cover of The Who are the best songs on here but the others lack any form of memorability compared with her full albums which manage to remain in the listeners head despite the sub-par production of Siberia and the samey style of The Listening. This was a nice addition to Lights' discography and more than worth a listen and is a great acoustic rock EP but just falls a little short of perfection due to its very short running time.