Blue Pillow conveys big emotions through simple strums.
Blue Pillow's latest, songs from the tub, contains five short but exceptionally powerful bedroom tunes. The elusive artist behind the project is an expert at conveying layered emotions through the simple strumming of ukulele and intricate uses of imagery. The little album starts with a song about friendship and the small details people often take for granted. The uke is fast-paced as they sing about their favorite parts of platonic relationships, from making messes to couch-crashing to hanging out for days.
"Pillow Case," the second song on the EP, takes a turn for the more thoughtful and wistful. Blue Pillow’s range is truly showcased in this song, and their voice weighs heavy while working through emotional muck. “Making up was never meant to be clean,” they sigh, a somber but honest admission of the difficulties involved with the healing process. Blue Pillow’s delicate use of imagery comes into play here with the lyrics, “flower buds in my pillow case.” When they smoothly sing that line, you can almost feel the softness of the pillow and the delicacy of the petals inside. There's a sense of caution, however, because you can’t relax without crushing the flowers within. "Ego" has a bouncy and infectious melody, but the words are not as lighthearted as they may seem. Here, Blue Pillow tells stories of long, rough, and blurry nights, detailing the nausea and uneasiness felt in the mornings after. “Getting tired of all these bags under my eyelids… reminders of who I was the night before,” hits especially hard with the description of the physical effects that accompany such emotionally exhausting experiences. “I am the only one I need,” Blue Pillow repeats confidently at the end of the song, reassuring that they can remain strong and independent even in the wake of a bad night.
"2 deep" is about the dangers of overthinking, something we're all too aware of the damage it can cause. Blue Pillow describes the paranoia and stress they feel due to slight changes in the subject’s behavior. Actions like “[getting] quiet” and “sweating” push Blue Pillow to assume all sorts of things - that the subject is mad at them, or is thinking about their girlfriend. But they don't confront these potential issues, and instead let the paranoia get the best of them - something we've definitely all done before. The album wraps up with "Alone with You," which is the simplest yet the most meaningful song on the album. Blue Pillow repeats “I love being alone with you” over and over while the ukulele strumming is slow and dreamy in the background. It mirrors the easy comfort felt around a loved one, and how simple it is to enjoy spending time with that person, separated from the world and with nothing else on your mind except their company.
Listen to Blue Pillow on bandcamp.
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Brianna Peterson plays awkward pop punk country in a band called Cooper!, loves everything outdoors and Twin Peaks, and is painfully torn between being a dog or a cat person.