Heaven Sent, the new album from Mini Dresses, arrives early this spring via Joy Void Recordings. The Boston trio has been creating their own intimate style of homemade pop since 2012, including a number of singles and EPs as well as their 2017 full-length debut on Joy Void. Their latest is a melange of home recordings, random studio sessions, and collaborations with friends - a departure from the intricate process that made their last record, but a return to the band’s spontaneous, DIY roots.
While the band cites historical influences like orchestrated film scores, outsider pop, and early goth music, the members’ headspace during the creation of Heaven Sent is entirely modern. The creeping terror of uncertainty echoes throughout the record. Unique and unsure career aspirations, rising authoritarianism, and Boston’s unaffordable cost of living lay the groundwork for songs like lead single “Rank and File,” a track the band describes as “an anthem with a lot of doubt in it”. Doubt and indecision about what choices to make when the stakes aren’t entirely clear permeate the record, like on closing track “The One Who Heard You”, disclosing a moment of empathy within a minimal yet lush song structure.
Even though Mini Dresses may not be able to answer what comes next or what do do about it when it comes, Heaven Sent is a record about being present. As the band states, it’s “about being in the moment, and how it feels to be working together whenever we can.” In both the process of collaboration that helped create the record and the recurring theme of solidarity through uncertainty, Heaven Sent captures that essence perfectly.