If you've been following this music blog at all for the past month or so, you know we are Waxahatchee superfans here at The Phoenix. Earlier this month, we followed Waxahatchee a/k/a former PS Eliot singer/guitarist Katie Crutchfield around on tour for a week, documenting her stops at a few different towns around New England (in Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, etc.) In March, Katie releases her second album for Don Giovanni Records, Cerulean Salt. It's basically all I have listened to since I first heard it in December, and I'm already quite certain that it will be one of my favorite albums of 2013. Last month, the label unveiled the record's first single, "Peace and Quiet", showcasing the change in production from the lo-fi home-recordings of 2011's American Weekend. (Cerulean was recorded and produced by Katie's Philly housemates Keith Spencer and Kyle Gilbride, who play in Waxahatchee's live band as well as in Swearin'). Today yet another excellent track from the new LP is available to stream. This one is "Coast to Coast", which I already told you about in The Phoenix last month:
Aesthetically, [Cerulean Salt] is a departure from her debut, balancing the same sentiments with tighter, more expansive production, and a new confidence and clarity, ranging from hi-fi crunchy indie-rockers like "Coast to Coast" (the closest anyone's come to writing a P.S. Eliot song since the group disbanded) to the stark, echoing drum-and-bass of "Brother Bryan."
But despite refining her sound here, Crutchfield's lyrics are still what makes this album addictive. It's hard to notice the varied styles at first, when the lyrics are this unapologetically piercing.