A year ago we shared a debut album from a most unusual music collective: The NYChillharmonic.
This 22-piece group was our introduction to its composer and principal vocalist, Sara McDonald. Now we are honored to share the first single from her latest project, the dynamic, Brooklyn-based “fever dream pop” quintet, Loosie.
Most people expect indie bedroom dream pop to consist of lo-fi instrumentation awash in heavy reverb. Like any genre, bedroom pop can be lackluster and soporific sometimes. But what Loosie delivers on their debut single “Today” from their Solvents in the Dream LP is far from ordinary. Simply put, Loosie creates ambient dream-pop designed to delight your senses.
Be prepared to not just hear this song but to experience it and revel in its expansive layers.
“Today” begins with a two-minute intro that lets each instrument shine. The spotlight passes between Dominic Mekky’s understated piano passage and Alex Kirkpatrick’s subtle percussion. The rich sounds of Ben Murphy’s bass and Louis Cohen’s guitar contribute greater dimension. Together they set a tone of cosmopolitan elegance. Finally, McDonald’s crystalline vocals give the song unifying cohesion. McDonald uses her voice as an instrument much like Agnes Obel or Björk, especially in her delivery of the higher soprano notes when you strain to detect whether you’re hearing her or the piano. The two mirror each other note for note at times, further adding to the song’s allure.
“Today” reflects the energy of a day in the city in what is essentially an entirely instrumental piece. Upon first listen, it echoes the gradual daybreak of a city that never sleeps. Its vibrance and restlessness are immediately evident. Repeated listens cast a different light, when “Today” becomes more of a sunset ode. You can picture a New Yorker sitting silently, perhaps gazing out a window while reflecting on the day’s activities as nightfall approaches. There is a hushed reverence in McDonald’s delivery as she reaches the coda with an almost imperceptible sigh. You are then transported to that place and the peaceful satisfaction you feel at the end of a fulfilling day.
“Today” is a cinematic soundtrack for life’s everyday moments. Equal parts reflection and inspiration, on this song Loosie captures the heartbeat of a city and condenses it into a sweeping, dream-pop epic.
Solvents in the Dream is out today and available from the group’s Bandcamp page.
Loosie features Sara McDonald (lead vocals, French horn), Louis Cohen (guitar), Dominic Mekky (keys), Ben Murphy (bass), and Alex Kirkpatrick (lyrics, vocals, drums/percussion).
You can follow the group on their social media platforms here:
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