Minted together by psychedelic, folk, rock, and doo-wop influences, Varlet is an indie genre-bending sonic dream layered over earthy, driving drums. On Varlet's November 2011 release, "The Drifter," Lilly Scott's vocals rise like bubbles bursting into a rocking jazz wail, as if Billie Holiday decided to resurrect and front a Neil Young-inspired indie act. The drums pulse with earthy distinction and song structures on guitar, lap steel, and piano range from classical composition, to jazz, to intricately woven '60s and '70s psychedelic progressions.
Yet Varlet's lyrical content may be the grittiest element the band offers on The Drifter. All members collaborate on each track's instrumentation and lyrics. Their partnership creates tangible narrative settings in every song on the new album: Perhaps Varlet is exploring the female experience of constructed identity ("High Heels", "Lady Lie"), or delivering straightforward commentary on the subculture of a city big enough to raise social adrenaline, yet small enough to wrap around yourself ("Eastern", "In My Pocket"). Fast riffs over folk elements pound your heart steadily into your throat as you listen to the only current female-fronted act delivering haunted, candid lyrics about modern urban life, without packaging that content into a gimmick.
The Drifter realizes Varlet's artistic vision to effect a striking amalgam of experimental folk with pulsing rock and roll undertones.
released 26 November 2011
Recorded by Andy Wild & Joe Ramirez
Mixed by James Barone
Mastered by Brian Marcus
Artwork by Ethan Garton
Layout by Josh Cool
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