Sophia Knapp - Into The Waves 12 inch
In the Brooklyn-based Cliffie Swan (a band still better known by its former name, Lights), Knapp's voice acted as a wispy counterpoint to her garage-guitar. Here, the instrumentation is almost self-consciously goofy-- the strings are tinny, the beats are pre-fab, and fade-outs prevent several of these tracks from ever having to actually resolve-- but Knapp's sweet and craggy vocals still manage to temper (and, in some cases, even justify) the goofiness of her backing tracks. The easiest analogue is Julee Cruise, who famously collaborated with David Lynch on the "Twin Peaks" soundtrack; Knapp's singing imparts a similar ghostliness, a sense of odd, unsettling discontinuity. The lush "Nothing to Lose", especially, feels like it was reverse-engineered to soundtrack a Lynchian moment: something absurd, something sinister, a high, breathy voice cutting through the darkness.