Briston Maroney’s ‘Ultrapure’ is full of love and lost connections

Indie-rock musician Briston Maroney is an American singer and songwriter from Nashville, Tennessee. Maroney applies a folk element to his music by highlighting personal strifes with contemplative lyrics and a combination of traditional instruments, like his acoustic guitar, with more modern means of music making. 

Maroney started his journey as a musician at 15 as a contestant on American Idol. Despite not winning, he currently has 2.6 million monthly listeners on Spotify with “Freakin’ Out On the Interstate” from his 2018 EP titled “Carnival” as his most popular song. 

Second to 2022’s “Sunflower,” Maroney’s newest album “Ultrapure” follows five single releases leading up to the album’s premiere on Sept. 22. These singles feature some of the album’s best songs like “Body,” which acknowledges Maroney’s effort to love before he can’t anymore.

“Ultrapure” is Maroney’s second album, but he has been consistantly releasing music since 2017. Photo courtesy of @bristonmaroney, Instagram

The third track on the album is an up-beat song called “Breathe” that features a steady and mature electric guitar that contrasts the song’s lyrics, which highlight his feelings of uncertainty. In this song, Maroney’s penchant to overthink is obvious with lyrics like “I’ve been living my life / Overthinking the options / What if the best option / Is none of these at all” and a chorus that reminds him to “breathe.” The outro is hopeful, embracing healing and the ability to change.

One of my personal favorite songs on this album is “Skyline” with its soft piano opening and sleepy acoustic guitar, accompanied by a balanced and subtle drum kicking in the second verse. This song’s lyrics like “On those Carolina islands / You swore we’d never die then / Told me all your secrets, my lips still sealеd for you” seem to be about being broken up with someone but still feeling a bittersweet kind of loyalty to them. 

Despite some themes of separating from a partner you love, there are considerably more songs on this album that focus on Maroney’s thriving love life and his appreciation for his significant other. Particularly, this is seen in songs like “The Idea,” “Chaos Party,” “Sunshine” and “Detonator.” 

“Spring” is yet another love song on “Ultrapure” that speaks to Maroney’s admiration for his significant other. This song starts with a quick electric guitar that mimics a racing heartbeat and that butterflies-in-stomach feeling. This song highlights the drive to spend as much time as you can with your lover with lyrics like “I don’t ever wanna leave / Ever wanna leave / Unless you’re coming with me / And who says, you got to go.” The chorus of this song also features a sweet lyric where Maroney proposes a quaint and personal marriage on the first day of spring. 

On this album, another minor theme is lost friendships with songs like “Sunburn Fades” and “Sink;Swim.” Both of which are about the complications that come with deep friendships and losing touch. 

Finally, the last song on the tracklist and the album’s namesake, “Ultrapure” is a folksy-sounding acoustic number with poetically spoken lyrics like “I was born to forgive you / Ultrapure like a child / It was never your fault / But surely, it wasn’t mine.”

Maroney’s songs feature beautifully crafted metaphors with strong electric and acoustic guitars. This album feels unique to Maroney because he sticks to his personal style while introducing new themes about love and introspection. Overall I think this is one of Maroney’s best albums and adds some really great songs to his discography.


4/5 Stars

Featured photo courtesy of @bristonmaroney, Instagram