Single Review: Emmy the Great – We Almost Had a Baby

Guitar melodies straight out of the 60s.  Sumptuous strings.  Choral harmonies.  Tambourines.  Xylophones not out of place in ‘Santa’s Super Sleigh’.  If this combination of factors sounds a tad schmaltzy, don’t DARE let me put you off.  This song is about a girl so desperate not to be left that she begins to consider having a baby to be a viable preventative strategy. 

What makes this single so beautiful is the stunning juxtaposition of lilting harmonics and bitter-as-hell lyrics, inluding such admissions as “once I tried to make a life / to keep myself in yours”.  It’s about the pain of having no power in a relationship, and the indignity of wanting to keep it that way.

It’s the B-side of this single, however, which showcases Emma Lee Moss’s phenomenal talent with words to its full.  ‘Short Country Song’ also centres around a relationship, but this time with a more hopeful (if realistic) slant.  A girlfriend watches her boyfriend browsing through porn and turning down preferred pages, and says of the man in question “But I know that I’m your favourite / I know that I’m the only thing you feel / Come and let me show you that it’s real”. The vulnerabilities and imperfections of this couple are painted in such a delicate fashion that, to this reviewer at least, it steals the show on this particular record.


Words: Helen True