Composer/Producer Kat Hunter has toiled away for the last three years on her very own DIY music project, known as Lack The Low. An experimental avant-pop record that hopes to be catchy, as well as challenging. Without further ado, let’s have a look at what this record has in store for us.
The album is nothing short of what it was made out to be, it’s full of experimental song structures, unexpected drum patterns, it’s got high soaring angelic vocals as well as lower, deeper vocals and the overall record conveys a mixture of melancholic and sorrowful songs as well as beautiful songs. And honestly, it’s challenging. It’s beautifully and masterfully written music, but it’s a little hard to listen to due to how strange it is. I think it may have missed the mark on being accessible. I don’t see this as a negative, though, I urge people who to listen to this record a few times through, as you’ll pick up more things each listen and grow a fonder appreciation. It’s a grower.
Smooth piano and a soft voice introduces us into the first song on the album, Do Your Worst. Vocally, the song is full of steadily climbing notes, reaching high notes and falling back down all the same. About a minute and a half into the song, some interesting sounds open up the “experimental” side of the song. Hunter’s vocals soar over what sounds like a kind of electronic effect of the shuffling of sticks and objects.
In second song, Progress, we have a kind of an electronic rumbling bass effect setting the rhythm, accompanied by piano and vocals that feel repressed yet grow more powerful as the song continues. The song droops low in the middle, with an echoing chorus of vocals, trumpet and violin and a quiet, steady drum beat closes out the song while a siren-esque wailing of the vocals plays in the background.
Third song, Futureheavy opens up when a soft piano verse plays underneath melancholy vocals that reside in the lower tones but rise high as well. A prominent drum pattern plays in the background. The structure and vocal melody in this song is unusual and indeed experimental, not what you’d expect upon first listen. This song has a foreboding vibe, like the soundtrack to something that’s about to happen.
Our next song, Dream Every Night of Running, starts with very strange and eerie violin noises. A clapping, tapping beat builds behind creating an ambience like you’re observing a folk festival from afar. The song features wailing, almost sorrowful sounding vocalizations, and then soft piano on its own for a good portion of the song, before a distorted violin sound begins to build alongside it and close out the song.
The Daylight Is All Inside, we have a kind of skipping CD sound in this fifth track, a clicking sound occurs and the vocals and violin chime in. This song blossoms into a very orchestral song. There’s violin and piano and soaring vocals aplenty and it’s very satisfying.
Next up is, It Did, I Can’t. It opens with the rhythm of a repeating note of a low, deep piano key. We get a clearer showcase of Hunter’s vocals, they’re less washed out and more prominent this time around. Rising trumpet and the introduction of drums usher the song into an ascending tune, everything rises with this steadily. Towards the end it takes a step back and has a kind of waltzing, classical dance feel to it.
Seven Different Species, the conveniently named seventh song, seems to take us onto a mountain cliff. There’s a stomping, clapping drum beat, a reverberating low hum of the trumpet and a subtle wind effect, hence the mountain. The vocals have a lot of powerful moments in this song, but the real shining comes from the way that the trumpet, piano and vocals weave together beautifully in the second half of the song.
Final song, God Knows Why. We’ve got haunting vocals partnered with a powerful sense of violin. Trumpets and Drums are there too, filling the instrumentation. The violin parts in this song are fantastic, with its quick sliding sounds and stretched out notes it takes a prominent role in this song, drums are “heavy” by this record’s standards and they help bring the record home and close out the song. I think this song serves as a beautiful end to the experimental record.
Pre-order ‘One Eye Closed’ via Bandcamp HERE.