Posts Tagged ‘My Little Empire Records’

The work of Texas-born songwriter Anna Roenigk, Aka Born Again Virgin first caught out ear back in 2017 with her self-titled EP. Last year Anna made the bold decision to uproot her life, and relocated to London. Her new single, “Spider in the Snow”, is her first offering to largely be recorded in the United Kingdom, although with White Denim’s Greg Clifford adding drums back in Austin, Texas. The track is released today via her new label, My Little Empire Records, home to the likes of Pip Hall and Caroline Lazar.

Discussing the inspiration behind the track, Anna has suggested Spider In The Snow was influenced by Dean Young’s poetic collection ‘Fall Higher’ – “Hark Dumbass, the error is not to fall but to fall from no height“. As Anna further explains, she takes inspiration from the freedom that line implies, seeing it as being, “courageous enough to take a chance on something or someone because either way we are all going to fall, whether it’s from a height or tripping over our own feet”. Musically the track seems to be a louder, denser offering than Anna’s previous releases, citing influences from, “the theatrics of Rufus Wainwright to the rawness of 90’s grunge”. The track starts with a sedate, meander of guitar and a raw vocal sound, perfectly suited to Anna’s memories of a relationship that seems to be long gone. Then suddenly as the song seems to be walking a familiar path, it explodes into a wave of noisy guitars, as Anna pleads for closure, “I’ll be your spider in the snow, waiting for you, and if you love me let me go, let me fall from your fingertips”. Born Again Virgin showed the bravery to upend their life and pursue their dreams across an ocean, and here it seems to have brought fresh inspiration, excitement and quite possibly her finest release to date.

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Scientists aren’t exactly sure how spiders survive the winter. Even in the coldest of climates, the arachnids seem to simply sit between the layers of snow and wait patiently for spring to come. Therefore it’s fitting that the central metaphor in Born Again Virgin‘s newest release– a ballad full of bitter patience and sombre desperation– would centre around this “Spider In The Snow.”

 

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We’ve been fans of Caroline Lazar’s around these parts since her stunning debut single, “Nevermine”, arrived a year ago on My Little Empire Records. With the small matter of a degree to finish we weren’t sure when we’d next hear from the sometimes Florida, sometimes Miami, based songwriter, thankfully this week the wait was over with the surprise release of her new single Georgia.

The first taste of an upcoming EP, Georgia might just be the most mature and nuanced song Caroline has released to date. Described by Caroline as, “a nostalgic song”, the track floats by with an undeniably wistful edge, chirping insects croak in the distance, as Caroline offers vague snapshots of “cracked lips soaked in red wine” and seems to question her own minds workings as she asks, “why am I thinking of you thinking of someone else?”Musically, Georgia is pitched somewhere between the bedroom pop of Soccer Mommy and 29-era Ryan Adams, as gentle drums, echoing electric guitars and buzzing organs create a sophisticated musical backdrop. A perfectly judged next step from a songwriter so clearly on the rise.

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Written by Reed Gaines and Caroline Lazar

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Pip Hall might share youth, a label and a flare for the emotional , Pip’s offering, “James”, is a raw slice of emotional outpouring. This is never more obvious than on the stunning title track, Pip’s tribute to her late father, who died when she was young; is part beautiful homage to his memory, part honest recollection of her struggles to grow up without him around.

Musically, across the EP, Pip shows a wonderful dexterity, from the fluttering electronics and Fleetwood Mac-like melodies of Devil You Don’t, to the driving twangy guitars of Turn Over. Throughout they are all pinned together by Pip’s frankly stunning vocal, an instrument capable of effortlessly shifting from an impassioned howl to an intricate whisper. At barely sixteen, Pip Hall is a mercurial talent, a songwriter with unlimited potential, and already quite probably Preston’s most famous musical daughter. If James is an intriguing introduction, where she goes next might just be incredible try and catch her while you can.

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“a gigantic talent…potentially massive” – The Line Of Best Fit
“Hall’s ability to write a brilliant pop hit is evident.” – Goldflakepaint
“It’s been haunting me all day. Sounding absolutely fantastic” – Radio X (John Kennedy)
“a palpable successor to the crown bestowed on Lorde after all.” – The Metro
“Revelatory songs wrapped in velvety synths and guitars” – Daily Mirror
“Stunningly penned tracks.” – Little Indie Blogs
“Wonderful” – Amazing Radio (Shell Zenner)
“Beautiful and engrossing.” – The Revue
“Graciously dark and lushly soulful” – Fame Magazine
“A star in the making.” – For The Rabbits

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Not everyone was going political this year though, there was still plenty of room for old fashioned heartache, and one artist still making it sound arresting and intriguing is Atlanta-born songwriter, Caroline Lazar. Although barely out of her teens, Caroline has plenty of musical experience after learning to play the piano aged four. It was in her high school days that, following a particularly painful break-up, she found much of the inspiration behind her “Nevermine” EP.

The resulting EP is musically fascinating; from the sensational dark-pop of single Trigger to the almost cabaret-like waltz of Lullaby, it is the sort of record you only get growing up on an eclectic mix of sounds and ideas. Best of all is the title track, a sublime dissection of young love un-ravelling in front our protagonist’s eyes, as Caroline’s voice builds to a jaw-dropping crescendo before fading back to almost nothing. A stunning introduction to the world of this huge talent, “Nevermine” is a spectacular listen.

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