Pomplamoose is back with another production-as-performance video!
There are some crazy chords in this video. Prepare your brain.
I feel like there should be a word for the way this girl is singing. I don’t dislike it, but it is very much a ‘thing.’ Bird and Bee, Regina Spektor, Feist – they all do a version of this same type of breathy indie girl singing.
It’s a very, very old singing technique borrowed from American folk music, where you don’t quite go full-voice and don’t quite stick each note. the effect is a rough approximation of both singing and speech. Listen to Joan Baez, Judy Collins, or Joni Mitchell. Guys can do it, too: Pete Seeger or especially Woody Guthrie. Obviously it goes back further, to Appalachian mountain songs, traditional Irish and UK folk… How it migrated to almost every kind of contemporary indie demands a different geneaology.
Both Saheli and this blogger called it “flat affect” singing — and here’s when the latter says it works:
“Usually, these indie-fying cover versions succeed when they strip away the bombast and reveal something more in the process.”
“Flat affect” describes a different quality than what Conor and I are getting act. I don’t think you could say that Joanna Newsom, or Feist, are affectively flat, and they share the same breathless folk warble-whisper. But “folk warble-whisper” plus “flat affect” gets Pomplamoose pretty well.
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