July 19, 2016

EP: Claire Cottrill / P.H.F.

Claire Cottrill maps out her emotions in tender-hearted reflections 
on a collaboration with Perfect Hair Forever.

Claire Cottrill draws the curtains from lo-fi bedroom pop and opens the window onto luminous sky-sized songs with a heavy heart. Cottrill has been recording and releasing fuzzy pop gems since 2013 from her a small town near Boston, Massachusetts. Her online musical presence reveals a growing maturity and self-awareness in songwriting from short diaristic expressions into wide-eyed rushes of emotion. Cottrill's latest EP with P.H.F. crafts ambient, lulling melodies that feel like they were pulled out of the Twilight Zone and into your most frequented daydream. The songs have become dreamier, dripping with flushed synth strings that bring to mind early '80s shoegaze bands like Galaxie 500 or Mazzy Star.

Reverb-drenched riffs puncture long, drawn-out notes that add depth to the layered rhythm of the tracks. “Living in the City” opens with an airy melancholia that feels instantly warm and soothing as it grants a tranquil space for reflection; it exists in a space of absolute calmness, the kind obtained by conscious breathing or sprawling out in a favorite park. “Misery” carries a juxtaposing sad-sweet melody as Cottrill reconciles the contortions of her heart. Her cavernous vocal leaps trace the ups and downs of a relationship with a bright-eyed melancholy. Cottrill maps out her emotions in tender-hearted reflections, “That night I knew you would always be true / Did it hurt when I said goodbye / I hoped it made you want to cry.” Each song on the EP sways with a soft confluence, like the quiet bird chirping during the opener of “Nobody” with ethereal beauty. She sings softly while trying to navigate a space for solitude: “All the birds and bees I want to go where there is nobody but me.” In a collaboration with P.H.F, the song “I’m So Blue” rings out with bittersweet melodies ad a heavy heart. Cottrill exorcises the confusion of her heart with poise as she wrings out emotion, “What is love all about / What am I missing about you.” Her words are gorgeous, sad, and exceptionally earnest, each exploding like fireworks in slow motion.


Listen to Claire Cottrill on soundcloud

Abbie Jones, who will sing along to every Liz Phair song at karaoke by heart and is always down to get milkshakes past midnight. When she isn't writing about music, she is playing drums in her band or hosting shows in her backyard.