This week sees the release of Hyaline, the debut full-length from Ohio-born, California-based songwriter Maria BC.
They captivated with their skeletal folk songs and gossamer voice on last year’s Devil’s Rain EP, but Hyaline is not a mere continuation – it’s a significant step forward. The complexity, both lyrically and musically, is bolstered to provide a deep dive into their psyche; a place ruled equally by love and fear, explored through lyrics that can be both vivid and vague, but always engrossing. Slivers of electronics and icy atmospheres augment the sci-fi and psychedelic feel of the record, but the intimate core of Maria sitting with their guitar is never lost amidst the gentle swirl that builds up. Each song is a tender vortex, pulling you into their mindset, giving you fleeting access to a vision of the world as seen by this empathetic, creative and poetic soul.
Needless to say, we wanted to know more about Maria’s influences and listening habits. They have returned with a list of albums they’ve been hooked on of late, and it is as diverse and unknown as we could have hoped. It’s given us plenty to discover – once we’re over listening to Hyaline, of course.
Dig into Maria’s picks below, but first enjoy their exquisite single and video “The Only Thing”.
fading not receding – nothing it waved back EP
This is a beautiful EP of five kinda folk-y, kinda emo acoustic tracks, each scoring the wages of growth and self-acceptance, nostalgia and grief, with so much generosity. I love the sobriety of its lyrics, for instance, “It’s different now because I’m aware / but it never really feels like that’s enough…” I wish I’d known about this artist when she made this record six years ago – she writes songs that only become more potent with time.
Villager – Frontier
Here’s an album that reaches through a wide range of genres, moods, and textures without overextending itself. Gorgeous harmonies, unsettling twists and turns – it’s the kind of music you want to hear first thing in the morning or on the road late at night.
ACO – Irony
Irony only lives up to its name in that it’s a pop album that isn’t very, um, fun. A major departure from ACO’s previous work, it’s a storm of organic and machinic sounds, spiraling, bizarre, mournful, at times abrasive, and totally mesmerizing. I want to know all of its secrets.
Kelly Moran – Bloodrot
[Telegraph Harp; 2017]
Kelly Moran writes music for prepared piano that seems so effortless, it makes the instrument even more uncanny. Bloodroot is, like, the belfry playing as you walk the streets of Uncanny Valley, in a dream in which that emotional place is made real… Something like that.