Genre classifications have their uses. A genre can help a listener generally know what they’re getting into when they press play, and can even be useful introducing them to other artists they might like. Of course labelling music by genre has its limitations, too. It tells you nothing about the specifics of an artist, and some classifications are so broad they’re essentially useless. It can be exciting to watch an artist take a genre and its conventions and turn everything on its head. Enter UK artist Roxy Rawson, who calls her music “anti-folk” and is not afraid to experiment with her sound. This is especially true on her new album Quenching The Kill, which we are happy to unveil for you here today.
Quenching The Kill wastes no time showcasing Rawson’s unique perspective. “Gods Got Bones” is built around a slightly off-kilter violin that immediately puts listeners on their toes, and Rawson provides a captivating and spooky melody to go along with the track. Across its ten tracks, you never know exactly what Quenching The Kill is going to throw at you next. It’s “anti-folk” in the sense that many of the instruments and themes of folk are present, but Rawson twists and bends them to her will. Highlights include the manic drum and picking of “Rounded Sound” and the beautifully performed minimalist number “Teardrop for Rosa.” While having it described in words may make it sound overwhelming, I can attest that the whole thing comes together magnificently when listened to as a whole album.
Quenching The Kill was inspired by very personal hardship in Rawson’s life. She says “I wrote and recorded this album as I was falling ill with lyme, so this album was written in that context, I was losing my life as I knew it- and I was also working with incredibly talented musicians, was excited about the future, but also could feel that things weren’t going to turn out as I would have hoped. There are lots of themes in this album. One is finding peace or giving space to the full gamut of emotions we humans feel, light and dark, peace and turbulence, love and hate…and the paradox of malignant love in songs such as The Good Shepherd, Born Again or Black Eyed Soup. Despite going through difficult times, music has always been an outlet to alchemize and give expression to the legitimacy of my feelings and I hope by my doing this, others can identify and feel that permission too.”
You can listen to Roxy Rawson’s new album Quenching The Kill below.