Quelliott Seamripper

Quelliott – “Seamripper”

Do you know the feeling of being so tightly wound by stress and worry that the smallest added struggle will snap you in two? Of course, you do. It’s a pretty common occurrence in the lives of most adults I know, young and old. For us–I’m speaking of post-college millennials finding their way into full-blown adulthood–this unwavering juggling act of your own life can be shocking. The clear passage of higher education is over. What happens next? Will we haze, constantly wandering?

This is the sort of  strife I hear on Savannah-based, Orlando-born singer-songwriter Elliott Lane’s debut single. Released under the pseudonym Quelliott, “Seamripper” is his lo-fi dump of internal feelings. A bassy voice begins over the purely acoustic music: “started off in the way of myself.” He goes on to paint a picture of shirts and ladders, getting hung-up on the way down. Instead of ascending to adult life, he is descending into it. It’s “darkness” and “terror.” This weight may be too much for him to bare.

one seam could honestly be it.

Once Quel utters this line, the song shoots into its next gear. Layered acoustic lines raise his pitch for the second verse, not his spirits. “My shoes fit snug on my feet. I feel cold snug on my fingers.” The songs overall tone can be seen in the cover art for Quelliott’s recently released album, MorningThe title is written over and over, and as we get down the page the repeated word begins to contort into nothing but frustrated squiggles. Morning after morning it gets worse.

SALES – “Renee” (Tiny Desk Submission)

Orlando duo SALES have yet to perform on NPR’s Tiny Desk series, but looking at their submission video, NPR is missing out. Lauren Morgan’s vocals fit oh so perfectly with the intimate ambience of the video’s mood; it’s easy to lose yourself in this two-some’s cozy sounds. Enjoy.

Hear SALES’ latest EP at their Bandcamp.


Album Review: Karen O – “Crush Songs”

Karen O is best known for her work in the art punk band Yeah Yeah Yeahs, but has also sang on a number of film scores, and wrote, directed, and starred in the musical Stop the VirginsCrush Songs is Karen’s first solo album, and is comprised of a collection of songs written and recorded in 2006 and 2007 at her NYC apartment. Enjoy.


I have adored Karen O ever since the first time I heard Fever to Tell. I knew Crush Songs wasn’t going to be Karen at her most bombastic, but the other side of her voice, the gentle, sometimes comforting, sometimes heartbreaking side that we first fell in love with on “Maps,” shines throughout the album. “Rapt,” “Beast,” and “Other Side” showcase Karen’s somber coo that is both eerie and touching. When we do catch a tiny glimpse of her animalistic self, at the zenith of “Body” or on “Native Korean Rock,” the juxtaposition feels explosive.

Most of the pieces on Crush Songs’ are incredibly brief; they feel like quick diary entries that we have sole pleasure to read. Although the majority of the album consists only of Karen’s voice and light guitar, this incredible closeness makes up for any lost elements.

Of the 15 small sketches, my three favorite appear in the middle, one after the other. “Days Gone By” is a moving picture of everything that is love. “Body” has a love-yourself-before-loving-someone-else message that climaxes with primal screams directed at our world’s heinous view of body image. Finally, “King” is beautiful ode to Michael Jackson containing charming lines like, “Is he walking on The Moon? I hope I don’t find out too soon.”

The album’s closer “Singalong” evokes the part of any memorable evening in where everyone’s feeling more than a little drunk, and way more than a little sentimental. A metaphor I find fitting for the entirety of this album. Because Karen’s Crush Songs’ home isn’t an extravagant discotheque, nor is it a sleazy basement party, instead the album’s aura is like the cluttered New York loft in which it was made. And although it’s no massive event, it still feels great to be invited inside.

15 Days to Bonnaroo: First Aid Kit

Love a Bonnaroo band that I haven’t featured yet? Shoot me a Facebook message telling me of their greatness. Enjoy.

Bonnaroo Tip of the Day: Put soapy washcloths in plastic bags and bring them to Bonnaroo. Wet the washcloth, and BOOM! Insta-bath.

First Aid Kit – Saturday, June 14, 3:00 P.M. – This Tent

Similar Bonnaroo Sounds: Neutral Milk Hotel, The Head and The Heart, Ms. Lauryn Hill

First Aid Kit first broke onto the music scene in 2008, when the folk duo released a cover of Fleet Foxes’ “Tiger Mountain Peasant Song” on YouTube. Since then, Johanna and Klara Söderberg have released two albums, and our currently promoting their third, Stay Gold. 

The angelic harmonies of First Aid Kit are instantly captivating; I haven’t heard voices with such technical and emotional prowess in along time. Their music isn’t anything groundbreaking, but the authenticity and beauty in which it’s presented is nothing less than touching. I’m not even someone who is generally attracted to acts like First Aid Kit, but I can recognize talent, and I enjoy seeing talented people perform. If you feel the same way, than I hope to see you there!