Album of the Week: Stick Season (Forever)

Written by Xindha Yaeger

Welcome back to Album of the Week! This week I’m taking some time to appreciate the work of singer-songwriter Noah Kahan and his new release of Stick Season (Forever)

Noah Kahan has seen his rise to fame the last few years; best known for his third folk-pop album, Stick Season (2022) which ranked 14th on the Billboard top 200. The single “Stick Season” hit number one on the UK Singles Chart as well as the ARIA Charts. In 2023 Stick Season (We’ll All Be Here Forever) featured six new songs and “The View Between Villages” Extended Version. However he didn’t stop there. While on his world tour, Kahan continues to feature various artists on tracks from Stick Season, ever expanding his discography and relations with fellow artists. He was also featured on Zach Bryan’s “Sarah’s Place” which placed 14th on the Billboard Hot 100. Noah also received his first nomination for Best New Artist at this year’s Grammys.

The Final Stick Season

February 9th Noah Kahan released his final version of his hit album, titled Stick Season (Forever). This 30-track album contains the original deluxe tracklist, features on most songs, and the brand new and anticipated “Forever”. Featured artists include Post Malone, Lizzy McAlpine, Kacey Musgraves, Hozier, Gracie Abrams, Sam Fender, Brandi Carlile, and Gregory Alan Issakov. Of the featured artists, I find Hozier, Kacey Musgraves, and Gregory Alan Issakov deliver the best performance alongside Noah Kahan. The collaborations with an assortment of talented artists, along with the release of “Forever”, in my opinion, make Stick Season (Forever) the perfect album.

There are many reasons for Noah Kahan’s popularity, but I find his relatability and connections with fans the most defining reasons. Themes in his work reflect nostalgia, change, and reflection on his own life. Below is my favorite lyric from “You’re Gonna Go Far”:

 So, pack up your car, put a hand on your heart

Say whatever you feel, be wherever you are

We ain’t angry at you, love

You’re the greatest thing we’ve lost

Not only does Noah Kahan provide a sincere perspective on what it feels to grow up and live through major changes in one’s life, he also puts these feelings into words that bring in a large audience of younger people. 

Kahan’s easy going personality allows fans to relate to him on a more personal level. For his first show in Australia he performed solo, as his band did not make it in time. Some may think this would ruin a concert experience, however from several videos, the environment seems more close and  intimate. Using the backdrop, he projected comments throughout the show joking with fans as he performed. 

In short, Noah Kahan is an amazing new artist and his significant popularity is definitely for a reason. If you have an interest in folk-pop, take some time to immerse yourself in Stick Season (Forever).

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