Published Oct 09, 2015Nicole Dollanganger sings with a high, sweet voice, usually accompanied by just a clean electric guitar. But there's a darkness lurking in her music: "I shot an angel with my father's rifle," is the opening line to her latest release, Natural Born Losers. In Dollanganger's hands, the lyrics sound sweet as honey, masking the menace of the words themselves. "I should have set it free, but I let it bleed."
Grimes' Claire Boucher plucked the Stouffville, ON musician out of Internet obscurity (she's already posted a number of home recordings on Bandcamp) as the first release on her new Eerie imprint. And like Boucher, Dollanganger expertly balances beauty and brutality; it's not a stretch to imagine Boucher's music, stripped of all its GarageBand accoutrements, sounding very similar to Dollanganger's.
Natural Born Losers is Dollanganger's first collection recorded in an actual studio. It finds the singer dropping the tumblr-core cultural pastiches of her past for a more insular world, making this her most intimate recording to date. Despite upping the fidelity though, she keeps things simple, adding droning guitars or some pounding drums when necessary. Otherwise, she uses the studio to add presence to her music, imbuing these 11 songs with a floating ambiance that draws direct lines to artists like Julee Cruise and This Mortal Coil. (Eerie Organization)