I recently released a six-track music EP with an accompanying zine, because that is something I always wanted to do.
My usual audio work tends toward sound collage and more avant-garde stuff, but it’s always been my dream to release a more traditionally “musical” project. Sometime last summer, I decided to take action. By January, I had a finished product: The Passive Voice EP and Zine. 16 pages of drawings and hand-printed lyrics, and six audio tracks (real songs! not just layers of ambient noise!) released under the name Brigid Fitch (a spoonerism that I first started using during my short stint as a teenage hardcore punk guitarist – if you’re wondering, I was truly horrible).
Musically, I was equally influenced by the confrontational industrial group Throbbing Gristle and the legendary Ms. Britney Spears, which led to a minimal, harsh pop kind of a sound. Heavy, computer-generated and manipulated beats, distant and distorted vocals, and the occasional hint of melodic accompaniment layer into a cohesive but slightly jarring audio experience. I wanted to strike a balance between pleasantly poppy and uncomfortably challenging, and I think I did a pretty good job.
Thematically, I was interested in questioning the traditional pop narrative, as well as manifesting the sort of feminist critique visible elsewhere in my artistic work. From the official blurb: Explorations of domesticity, disembodied sexuality, power and violence subtly emerge through an interplay of sound, text and image. The Passive Voice speaks of strength through passivity, ambiguity, and ever-present anxiety.
The lyrics vacillate between off-kilter manifesto and violent breakdown, and the drawings, often physically overlapping with the text, reflect the paradoxical agency of apparent passivity. In this way, it pays homage to Moira Roth’s idea of “The Aesthetic of Indifference” in a feminist context (hi art theory people!), quietly echoing glamorous but tragic female pop-cultural figures.
If you are interested in checking out the music, you can listen via the BandCamp player above. If you really like it and want to buy a copy (and check out the zine!) you can do so via my BandCamp or Etsy.