There are points in life where things don’t seem to match up, for example the photo, Susie Merry on the cover of Body in Time and the lyrics to the album, where this seemingly sweet thing takes a harsh look at life and delivers something much different than you expected. It is a fascinating, unvarnished look at a world that simply doesn’t make sense. Over the course of her debut EP, she looks at life and sees things that show her to be wise beyond her years.
Her guitar playing has some of the feel of Nick Drake, while her lyrics cut both ways illustrating the frustrations of life yet leavening them with sympathy and hope. Amidst the fingerpicking ‘The Weatherman’ takes on the tale of a weatherman who killed himself, “You better listen up because the water’s speaking for him now.” Strings add to the solemnity of the song as it continues on to the funeral and beyond as she begins to envision his life. “He lived by what he knew/ Staying small and paying dues/ Leave out the deeper shit/ People only care about the surface level.” Even more remarkable the final lines of the song where she offers, “How ‘bout a place to rest/ Somewhere you can lay your trouble head/ Talk about the things you’ve seen? The things you’ve said.”
Equally as powerful, ‘The Well’ was written on the day Merry received a diagnosis of endometriosis. Affecting one in ten women, the rawness of that moment and the effects that it might have on her life spilled out. Not even completely aware of whether she wanted children or not, feelings cascaded in all directions. Yet in the end there is a sense of positivity that comes through despite everything. She concludes, “Still there’s time” and follows that up with, “Maybe one day I will stand in line.” Possibilities exist and hope has no price tag.
With just four songs, Susie Merry has announced her presence on the music scene in a most remarkable way. The charcoal sketch adorning the cover is itself another piece of the puzzle. The woman’s naked body reflects just how much of herself she has exposed on Body in Time. She stands before us, revealing her deepest thoughts, unafraid. So much of life is outside of our control, yet Merry has the courage to face her life, not to mention her fears and carry on.