This is not the first time we meet Katie Buchanan, a singer-songwriter and producer who’s been working the past years producing for other artists, like Jenny Kern (where we came across with Katie’s work) producing her debut EP, and others. Born and raised in Kansas, Buchanan grew up surrounded by musicians and radio-stars, the reason why she soon began writing and composing music. 4 years ago, back in 2015, she put out her debut album, Glow, a 9-track (plus Anchor) full-length full of pop and commercial elements, making her first and brand new album truly catchy. In June 2017 she released her second LP Who We Are When We’re Standing, also a 9-track album, highly influenced by country music with a twist of pop Americana, following a bit the tendency of the previous one. Her folk was soft and quite catchy but her powerful voice needed more. As a producer she could open her mind and ideas and so she returned this year with plans for a forthcoming EP, The Over Under.
Notoriously more indie and folky, Katie explores her guitar with many different approaches: she sounds more rocker sometimes and gives space to her voice to grow and sound more pure. The Middle is the first prove of those changes, even though it still sounds too country-ish, she already included electric indie guitar riffs and explores alternative rhythms and beat elements. The melody remains plain, sounding like in a loop but it actually evolves in a smooth way making it a beautiful journey until the end of the song.
Then Katie Buchanan releases Twitch and the whole renovation is now crystal clear: the guitar is played softly in a melancholic fingerpicking combining perfectly with her whispery voice. The chorus hits envolved by a drum-set and space sounds as the electric guitar forgets the softness and becomes rough reminding early Justin Vernon riffs as in Re:Stacks or Blood Bank. Katie’s vocal techniques sound close to Kern’s (or vice-versa) and for us that’s delightful. The way she balances the melody between smooth and raw power is as bright as it can be. Her guitar sounds like crying and mourning the whole song but her voice is serene and confident. How can a melancholic song sound so blissful?
Apart from all the comparisons, Buchanan is sounding now more unique than ever and her talent is making its way up. The only thing we wish for is that she keeps growing and changing and making beautiful songs. We’re patiently waiting for the EP.