Maya Bon, the singer-songwriter behind Hudson, New York’s Babehoven, views light as one of life’s few fundamental truths. In times of pain, we often look to simple things we can rely on, and light is as reliable as they come. Babehoven’s first full-length album Light Moving Time (out Oct 28, 2022 on Double Double Whammy) revolves around Bon’s view of life as a confusing, jarring, and kaleidoscopic experience filled with contradictions, loss, and change, so it’s no wonder Bon often looks to light — not so much for specific answers, but as a pillar of continuity and a marker of time.
Bon has built a solid partnership with her musical collaborator and producer Ryan Albert over the last few years, releasing several EPs together since 2018. Their work displays Bon’s emotionally incisive approach to songwriting that draws just as much power from abstract poetry that asks big questions as specific, personal vignettes. Similarly, Light Moving Time rests on lyrics that zoom in and out, inviting listeners to bring their own experiences to these songs when her writing is more cryptic, and stew in the moments when Bon presents her entire heart on a platter.
The band’s debut album is emblematic of Babehoven’s wide range of dynamics, and each of those sounds are taken further throughout the album. Alternating seamlessly across styles, “Circles” and “Philadelphia” have the wispy ambient calm of a Liz Harris track, “I’m On Your Team” falls somewhere between a flowy country song and an ‘80s power ballad, “Marion” contains the plucky indie-folk warmth of Hovvdy, and “Stand It” and “Pockets” are coated with My Bloody Valentine’s wobbly shoegaze. But in contrast with the band’s prior releases, these tracks utilize Bon’s voice with greater emotional impact than ever before.
Light Moving Time encompasses tributes to loved ones and the power of community, experiences of trauma, and explorations of changing relationships, with self-reflections scattered throughout. The album is less about how to deal with pain and more about how we all experience life as a simultaneously cruel, beautiful, and illogical beast — full of complex emotions and a perpetual sense of subjectivity that leaves us unsure of what’s real. But across Light Moving Time, Bon remains reassured by the fact that all of us are in this soup together, capable of generosity and a level of connection that’s impossible to articulate with words.