words by tom johnson
photograph by hannah solomon
As the opening track of her forthcoming EP, ‘Circles’ will act as an introduction for many people to Brooklyn songwriter Juliet Quick. As preludes go it’s a rather special one, highlighting not just that voice, which gently frowns at its corners, trailing off into unspoken sadness, but also the experimental flecks of her work; the swirling strings that drape this song in a different kind of light.
Said EP, entitled Glass Years and set for release in early March via Substitute Scene, is a wholly intriguing world unto itself, its five songs crafted from that voice, guitar, strings, subtle synths, and lap steel; that instrument so totemic with despondency. And there’s plenty of that here, the songs acutely detailing Quick’s dealings with depression and dread: “There’s no future,” she repeats further into the EP.
There are moments where that darkness cracks, however, and ‘Circles’ especially finds a way to let a little light in, to look toward some kind of freedom albeit with trepidation. It’s that track which we’re sharing here today, ahead of the EP’s release.
“Circles is about filtering out the feedback of others and just living inside yourself, even if that isn’t always the easiest place to be,” Juliet says of her new song. “I have trouble doing that—I have had this lifelong compulsion to be perceived as ‘good,’ even to people who I don’t think are ‘good!’ The particular kind of depression I was in when I wrote this song, though, gave me some relief from that at times.”
“It was much more difficult to care about pleasing people,” she continues. “There are a handful of external voices that appear in the song—advice-givers, pedantic men, crust punks—who are kind of gently ignored. It is definitely a sad song but it is also about freedom.”
A poignant and perfectly balanced moment of reflection, it’s a beautiful song; rich and engaging and full of meaning. Listen below right away; Glass Years arrives in full on March 5th.
You can preorder the EP here: https://linktr.ee/substitutescene
A Music Journal ~ Issue SEVEN
Our Curious Printed Magazine