We all assume that the truly memorable moments in your life are the rushes of adrenaline, as some scary drama sideswipes you unexpectedly, or when everything changes following the birth of your first child, or a marriage with the one you love – you know the really big things. Well, as John Lennon once insightfully stated “life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans“, so today we want you to imagine the moments in between the large, obvious life-changers.
Imagine the seconds you take to pause in life and ponder. It might be a quiet moment watching the rain hit and run down the window, or the silence you meet in the countryside with nothing but a beautiful view or the breeze on your face for company. It’s your own Lost In Translation moment as you stare out of the car window from the back seat. Well, Yohuna soundtracks those moments.
Yohuna is the female solo artist, Johanne Swanson, who currently calls the University of New Mexico home, although she’s originally from Wisconsin. She recently got in touch with us and informed us of her plans to join up with another artist, known as Vacation Dad, in Los Angeles in the summer. Vacation Dad helped produce, record and mix her debut EP, Revery, which together they turned into four tracks of masterful, emotive music.
It was initially released in January of this year, but she told us that it’s likely to get a re-issue this summer with a fresh impetus. The opener, Keep Apnea, is a great example of what lays ahead on the EP, as the music arrives like mist, creeping into it’s gentle layers as the atmospherics begin to surround you. Echoing beats add structure to a tune that otherwise doesn’t ever seem to fully punctuate.
Her vocals are just as ethereal, which hit their most tearful on the track, Matteo. As with all of her songs they are kept deliberately epicene, as she strips her muliebrous music of any masculinity. Like another Recommender favourite, Grimes, this seems to be the kind of music that a male solo artist simply couldn’t sing.
It’s All Yours introduces a slight change in pace, mainly due to the reverbed drumming. It’s less patient than the other songs and feels less like a soundtrack to the closing scene in a David Lynch movie, but still maintains her ghostly aesthetic. It adds a refreshing rate to the centre of the EP as it’s layers find a propulsion upwards, seeming like Enya being backed by the reverbed gutaring of Jesus & Mary Chain‘s William Reid.
The final tune, Hometown Key, returns to the close-your-eyes-music, as her melodic voice once again leads us into the mist. It’s a stunning closer. It’s so tender and so cinematic that it never fails to pause you. It makes you think, which is actually a very difficult trick to pull, but she repeatedly manages it throughout this EP. She told us that she’s planning a few gigs throughout the Pacific Northwest in the summer, so you may get the chance to witness her hypnotic show if you live in that area of the world. In the mean time, listen to the below tracks and be prepared to have one of ‘those’ moments. (MB)
YOHUNA – MATTEO
YOHUNA – HOMETOWN KEY