April 15, 2015

LP: Colleen Green - I Want to Grow Up

Growing up with Colleen Green.

Turning the page on the decades right before and after your thirties can either feel like a dreamy or depressing turning point. Ageing up (we're supposed to believe) comes with all the things you hoped would happen: maturity, job, marriage, money, partnerships, knowing who you are (a.k.a. 'finding your-better-self'), and more. The reality, most often, is that life experience can't be quantified or measured until time itself has passed. We aren't handed it, like a certificate, standing before a door with a note on it telling us to go in now that we've made it to a certain place in our lives. Colleen Green's new album, I Want to Grow Up, is a ragged and tender exploration and goldmine portrayal of worries, and concerns regarding aging ("growing up") and its various parental and societal expectations, translated into a glorious mixture of raw guitar, pre-programmed beats, and pop-punk.

The follow-up to 2013's Sock It To Me, opens up the production on everything from Colleen's wistful vocals, to the guitar-work and the songwriting. There are so many songs on the album to ponder lyrically like, "I gotta stop doin' things that are bad for me/I'm thinkin' maybe I could change my body's destiny" ("Things That Are Bad For Me Pt. I"). Although the point of view is certainly gendered (at times) and Green's own "Do, you want a girl whose views, are interchangeable/Why, is it so easy for, some people/Could there really be someone out there who's really perfect for me..." ("Some People"); the songs become relatable on such a cellular level that it's easy to relax into her thoughts and let Colleen do the worrying for you.

My favorite track is packaged in a dark and electronic mood veering toward new wave. Titled "Deeper Than Love," the melody, and lyrics especially, walk you through in stream-of-consciousness style; questioning intimacy, gender roles, and whether finding someone who loves you for who you are and also, for who you are not, is ever going to happen. As a veteran member of LA's scene, Green also has allies in numbers, surrounding herself no doubt with some great friendships among musicians and artists with similar vibes to hers (Upset, Girlpool, Slutever, Sean Lennon, and Faye Orlove to name a few). As an artist and director/videographer, the aforementioned Faye created Slutever's video "White Flag" and then went on to create Colleen's "TV", which also features smart and funny cameos from the same group of friends. This is Colleen's masterpiece and we're enjoying every second of it.


Listen to Colleen Green on bandcamp.

Carly M. plays the drums in Philly's Pretty Greens. She is a feminist and has been writing about and interviewing bands starting as a college radio DJ in the late '80s in Windsor/Detroit. The first zine she ever wrote was dedicated to the band Lungfish (Rainbows from Atoms, Dischord, 1993). She attends at the temple of John Hughes: Samantha Baker and Jake Ryan, together forever - Amen. Find more writing here or playlists here.