I have a sneaking suspicion that Sarah Buxton will develop into a songwriter for the ages. She’s getting there already. “Space” builds a song around a classic break-up line – “I need space” – and explores all of its implications.
There’s a distinct tension between her claim that she’s willing to give him space, and the stark portrait of loneliness that she paints of his future existence without her. There’s a sense that she doesn’t want him to go, but that she can’t quite understand how to love a man who needs to be alone to find happiness.
Buxton’s never been showcased so well on record before. The stripped-down arrangement and her rough vocal are a perfect match the rawness of the material. It’s so intimate that it’s almost uncomfortable to listen to at points, but she pulls back and the band comes in for the chorus, giving some necessary emotional breathing room. It’s well-constructed without sounding deliberately crafted.