You might be familiar with 25-year-old Portlander Moorea Masa for her past work with Ural Thomas as part of his vocal “pain.” These days she’s on the road harmonizing with k.d. lang, and has even found time to craft her solo debut. No doubt the focal point is Masa’s timeless, soulful voice, which ripples and flows through melodies like a river. The arrangements surrounding merge pop and R&B, maintaining an intimacy amidst glittery, bright sonic layers. Yet it’s the closing title track that really cuts through; it’s the keenly focused eye of the record.

“These past few years I’ve been digging deep into my history, my own learning lessons, and the state of the world. I feel like I took a light and shined it into all the darkness and beauty that I was previously too scared to look at. I’ve seen our country doing the same thing, and for me this album reflects not only my personal journey with love, loss, abuse, and relationships, but my journey with social issues such as women rights, racism and those necessary tough conversations that begin to move things forward. My hope with this record is that it inspires others to go inward into themselves and do the same. I also hope people take away the fact that they are not alone in this crazy and often confusing journey.. And mostly I hope they enjoy!”  — Moorea Masa

You can see Moorea Masa & The Mood at Doug Fir Lounge in Portland on May 20th.