Alexandra Burress is a 21-year old singer / songwriter and producer from Portland, OR. Her latest album was recorded in the San Diego of her formative years, and finds her crafting a warm, tender, dreamlike suite of eight songs that gently wrap the listener in their gauzy, affecting textures.
These are pieces built from gentle, beatific fragility, their sparseness punctuated by subtle sounds – guitar, electronics, reverb, unplaceable instrumentation, field recordings – with each element given space to develop under Alexandra’s plangent, ruminative vocal. The standout track ‘Roller’ finds that vocal draped in transformative echoes while shimmering synth pads and a submerged, frantic, but never distracting processed rhythm propel the song relentlessly forward, concluding in a nest of whining, atonal sounds. ‘Membrane’ sees Alexandra’s vocal delivered as overlapping passages full of mystique and reflectiveness, accompanied by an inchoate, ever-shifting, dramatic bed of tiny sounds, scratchy micro-beats and emotion-manipulating glitches, mixed with naturalistic sounds.
The result is an album that is both deeply personal for its creator and yet universally shared: we have all transformed ourselves whether through circumstance or the decisions we make; we were all once children experiencing a world stretching out in front of us, making mistakes and finding ourselves as we go; we have all shed many skins, both physically and metaphorically. Ecdysis’s powerful and utterly captivating conceit is to focus you in on that which once was, who we are right now, and what we might yet become.
Ecdysis by Alexandra was released July 26 2019 by Spirit House Records.
Words: Mat Smith
(c) 2019 Further.