Psych

KITTY COEN

artistImage: 
   

Kitty Coen Cultivates a “Holy” Sound in New Single

 Kitty Coen encapsulates a slew of sounds in her latest single, Holy. She proves that she has no barriers, displaying an ability to induce dancing, headbanging and hypnotic swaying all within a three-and-a-half minute stretch. Though many artists and genres come to mind when listening to Kitty Coen, she has undeniably formed her own musical identity and we should all be extremely excited about what the future holds for her. 

After seeing Kitty perform live for the first time a little over a year ago, I remember thinking of her as a more rock n’ roll version of Mazzy Star. But after listening to more of her music, and with every new single, the scope of artists that I’m reminded of continues to grow, including acts like Billie Eilish, Stevie Nicks, Tame Impala and David Bowie. “Honestly, genre isn’t something I think about when creating my music…I’ve gotten everything from ‘grunge-country' to 'electro-pop', so I try not to think about genre and just make the music that I believe expresses the moment best,” Coen said. In modern music, genre-blending and embodying many influences are more prominent than ever, but finding cohesion and originality can be a struggle. For Coen, finding this balance doesn’t seem to be a challenge at all. 

What makes Holy stand out amongst her other releases is the fact that it leans, perhaps, a bit more heavy on the rock side of things. The song features a prominent guitar part that hooks you in from the beginning, as well as a disco-ish drumbeat that really drives the song forward in the second verse. Of course, as the song’s energy builds, so does the intensity of Kitty’s vocals, showing off her dynamic singing abilities. She provides some backstory into the creative process of Holy, saying “I met up with a friend after months of not playing music with anyone during quarantine and he started laying down a guitar riff. I was just kind of improvising and came up with a melody I liked and the phrase ‘holy with a broken heart.’ From there I used sounds and tones that reflected the feeling of transcending and floating while still making it slap.” Indeed, she makes the song “slap.” One of the things that really makes Holy a great song is that it constantly feels like it’s going somewhere new. The textures, overdubs, and energy continuously build and there isn’t a dull moment throughout the duration of the song. 

The fact that she only has six releases under her belt is mind-boggling. She continues to prove that she has no creative limitations, and it wouldn’t be surprising at all if she is one of the next breakout artists from Austin. Stay tuned for her debut EP to gain even more insight into the Kitty Coen experience.


-- Quinn Donoghue

 

   

Drakkar Noir/Heidi Sabertooth seduce you to The Sleep of Reason

The music heard on The Sleep of Reason, a split EP by the DJ/producer/multi-instrumentslist team of Heidi Sabertooth and R Gamble a/k/a “Drakkar Noir” released on Chicago’s Jacktone Records, is both primordial and futuristic—the sound of electronic circuits climbing out of the primordial ooze and becoming self-aware—which seemingly fits perfect for these two artists one of whom is named for a family of prehistoric predators, and the other named after the most primordial cologne of the ‘80s and ‘90s.

These eight tracks of old-school-inspired electro, industrial, acid, and EBM (electronic body music) are raw and spontaneous sounding—qualities that many wouldn’t associate with electronic music—due in no small part to the use of standalone electronic hardware, machines that the user manipulates in real time and which were recorded live here for the most part so that a certain level of improvisation works its way into things. Much like more conventional instruments, these types of electronic instruments don’t always behave as expected or as intended, meaning that it takes skilled and sensitive musicians to improvise around unexpected sonic detours and that’s a big part of what makes this method of music making and this EP compelling.

What also makes Sleep of Reason compelling are the songs themselves—built on minimalistic yet ever-morphing grooves that burrow under your skin and into your grey matter with the insistance of a funky flea circus passing through town. And that’s not even to mention the glitched-out, paranoid android vocals heard in various sonic forms from track to track whispering intimate-yet-oft-indesipherable sweet creepy nothings into your earholes.

 

Elsewhere Ms. Sabertooth has described her four tracks as “a channeling of angst and disenchantment about relationships, technology, and expectations of the modern femme.” And you can can hear the pure, uncut intensity of this angst and disenchantment on, say, “It Says You Read It” that with its clattering beatbox percussion and squelchy sine waves pretty much sounds like a Peaches song on Promethazine; or on “I’m Gaining Weight Again” that with its spiraling and increasingly distorted doomy sonic vortex is something like an obsessive shame spiral rendered in sound.

Drakkar Noir’s four songs mine somewhat similar territory but with significant differences as well—mining slightly more insistent beats and a stronger acid influence, all appropeiate to his nom de parfume alter-ego—like on side-opener “Free Delight” which makes the very notion of free delight sound both enticing and slightly uneasy as if you just know all that free delight is gonna come back to bite you somehow.  Or the next track “Shadow Reel” which is kind of like “Planet Rock” if the planet in question were Jupiter with its cold, windy clouds of ammonia.

Which all fits well with the loose overarching concept and titular inspiration for the EP which is 18th-century Spanish painter/printmaker/iconoclast Francisco Goya’s famous etching entitled The Sleep of Reason Produced Monsters (well it’s famous if you’re an art historian at least) which depicts an artist passed out at his drawing desk surrounded by a sepulchral swarm of bats and owls, with a caption reading: “Imagination abandoned by reason produces impossible monsters; united with her, she is the mother of the arts and source of their wonders". Truer words, etc. etc.

And hey if you’re feeling these retro-futurist electro bats and owls vibes then be sure to keep an ear out for Gamble & Sabertooth’s live DJs sets on Brooklyn’s very own The Lot Radio. And if you’re the greater NYC metro area region, you may also wanna check out the Lost Soul Enterprises collective and record label of which they’re both core members and which currently has a regular bi-weekly residency going at h0L0, a spacious progressive music oasis tucked away in the borderland between Bushwick, BK and Ridgeway, Queens. (Jason Lee)

   

KITTY COEN

artistImage: 
   

KITTY COEN

artistImage: