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Baker's Dozen

Moulding Voices: Julia Holter's Favourite Albums
Gary Kaill , September 23rd, 2015 09:22

From a girl group compilation heard in childhood to more recently discovered singer-songwriters and jazz via a medieval mass, the LA composer talks Gary Kaill through some key albums in her record collection


Jessica Pratt - On Your Own Love Again
I love her music. I toured with her a little bit a few years ago. This album came out after we did that. It's just really beautiful and haunting. There are so many people in the world making songs but there are only a few people doing it so that it all blends together as well as it does here. It doesn't happen that much. Sometimes it's sort of pleasantly off or weird or sometimes it's just awkward but most of the time it's just really boring. But she just does this great job of making it seem effortless and dreamlike and strange. I don't know, it's just really good.

The lyrics: sometimes you don't quite hear them but then you do. The harmonies are so great. And she does something that I think I do too: she works with the timbre aspect of the music to affect her enunciation, and that has a lot to do with the success of it. She's moulding the shape of her mouth, almost, to get the sounds that she does. She's choosing to enunciate in this very particular way that is to do with harmonics and that sort of thing. I guess the difference with me maybe is that I'm not so good at having a distinct voice that is consistent throughout my songs; I have trouble with that. I don't necessarily think that's a bad thing, it's just a different approach. But she's really good at maintaining this consistent voice and I love that.

And she has a style, too. You know, like, fashion-wise? I just really think that's cool when you have a distinct style. That's classic. That's something I think is really fun. I like it a lot. And all that reflects in her music - there's this whole vibe.