Quality Not Quantity: Scarlett Saunders - Bouquet

Scarlett Saunders - I Should Know.

Background promo - About ‘I Should Know’ Scarlett plays her darkest hand. The sultry vocal stylings and direct address to her father are reminiscent of Lykke Li. “Are you stupid enough to touch her with your love?” goes the hook atop warm synths and clean minimal production. In Scarlett’s words it’s about “the initial anger and confusion that my father was going out with someone who was exactly the same age as me and also 19 years old at the time.

About Blue Again EP Poignancy simmers beneath ‘Blue Again’, the new EP by Felixstowe artist Scarlett Saunders. On the one hand it’s a pop record - the immediacy of the music makes this much obvious. On the other, it’s something literary and harder to define; a probing exploration of love lost and time passing. It’s a record that is just as much at home in a casual pop lover’s library as it is in the most zealous followers of leftfield music.

About Scarlett Saunders Creative polymath Scarlett Saunders is an old school artist. Kickstarting her days by painting on foraged wood, she then makes her way to acting school for a twelve hour stretch before going home and working late into the night by channelling her remaining creative energy into wonderfully poetic pop music. For Scarlett, all mediums of creativity reflexively bleed into her work. Music is one of several mediums open to her, all of which are tended and watered with equal dedication. Her fixation with art stems not from any ego-flattering preoccupation with being an artiste or celebrity. She entertains no highfalutin dreams of top 40 stardom. Instead it stems from something much purer; a driving need to express herself purely to entertain and enrich her life. Growing up in a house where her mother didn’t believe in TV or games as a form of entertainment, she would sing or read to occupy herself. The result, as manifested in her music, is a close emotional connection to her subject matter. Music and lyricism are as natural to her as eating or breathing. On her debut EP ‘Blue Again’ she goes some way to prove that, producing four graceful and lyrical compositions that explore human relationships and remembrances. With writing as concise and direct as hers, all the world will surely be her stage.

We featured a track from the Blue Again EP back in June however the opportunity to share 'I Should Know' is to good to miss. Back in June I said "it's hard to pigeonhole her music" and this song remains pretty leftfield pop as well. I'm told that Scarlett is getting attention from the music business alongside some encouraging reviews, all of which is understandable with songs this good.


Bouquet - All Living Rooms.

Background - LA minimal pop duo Bouquet release their latest single "All Living Rooms." The track will be featured in an upcoming episode from the third season of Transparent.

Bouquet is a minimal electronic duo formed in Los Angeles in 2013. Members Carolyn Pennypacker Riggs (vocals/guitar) and Max Foreman (vocals/synthesizer) take an approach to pop songwriting influenced by early electronic post punk and 70s folk, constructing a world of surrealist imagery with emotional acuity.

Carolyn is a visual artist, chorus director, and recently created the score for a Cartoon Network short; Max is an experimental composer and music professor. The two bonded over a shared love of boundary pushing artists such as Sly & the Family Stone, Laurie Anderson, The Raincoats, Yoko Ono, Suicide, Gal Costa, Julee Cruise, Silver Apples, and Throbbing Gristle. In 2015 Bouquet released their debut EP In A Dream on Ulrike/Folktale Records. Using a palette of vocal harmonies, analog electronics and thundering guitars, In A Dream invites the listener into Bouquet’s uncanny universe, where clocks strike backwards and dust fills trophy cups.

Since 2013, Bouquet has performed live with acts such as Zola Jesus, Deradoorian, Chris Cohen, Tinariwen, SOAK, Ariel Pink, EMA, Eileen Myles, Lower Dens, Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy, Nite Jewel, Geneva Jacuzzi, and Mt. Eerie, at venues such as Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; Art Basel Miami; and All Tomorrow’s Parties Festival, UK, curated by TV on the Radio. Live shows often incorporate visual elements created by Carolyn and collaborators including JJ Stratford, Dawn Garcia, and Ry Rocklen. Bouquet is currently planning to release their debut full length LP, Spellbreaker – mixed with Cole Marsden Greif-Neill – the end of 2016.

Tour Dates (more TBA):
10/3 Los Angeles, CA - Skylight Books for Rad Women Worldwide book launch
11/03 Portland, OR - Mississippi Studios *
11/05 Seattle, WA - Barboza *

11/09 Los Angeles, CA - Bootleg Theater *
* = w/ Chris Cohen

For a minimalist pop duo the new song 'All Living Rooms' sounds quite expansive and full of atmosphere. Gently melodic and with charming vocals this is, one very tasteful track.