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Thelma





Great New Emerging NYC Folk: Swimming Bell, Thelma, Pueblo, Hayes Peebles and Swoon Lake

Once again, 2017 was a year of experiments in modern folk music. Two NYC acts that pushed the boundaries of the genre and further defined the slightly fuzzy definition of neo-folk were Swimming Bell and Thelma. “The Golden Heart,” the former’s debut EP, carved fresh arrangements and harmonic material out of familiar instrumental textures. Thelma’s self-titled record meandered into darker lyrical and melodic territory, though with a consistent crystalline vocal perched atop often dissonant chords and rockier textures. That being said, Pueblo and Hayes Peebles, on the rootsier end of the spectrum, shone with stellar songwriting and nuanced arrangements, offering up an enlightening modern take on a more traditional sound. Pueblo released their flavorful record “Boring the Camera,” stirred memories of an electric Simon & Garfunkel. Hayes Peebles’ “Ghosts EP” offered breathtaking melodies with lush, sentient lyrics, while peppering in a twangy guitar or two. We also really enjoyed Swoon Lake's lush ballads from her sophomore self-titled EP, although the artist doesn't seem to be very active live. - Geena Kloeppel

Here's a playlist with a song each from these five artists. 





Thelma brings her world of haunted beauty to Alphaville on 04.29

Have you ever wondered what the genre "alt-cherub" sounds like? Listen to Thelma to find out - these keywords are listed as the genre on her Facebook page. It's a pretty accurate description; her sound is sparse, though at times breaking into affected drum arrangements; falsetto gliding overlapping in canons and synths building drama make sure you never feel quite at ease in Thelma's world. The song "Peach" highlights that conundrum and puts inner turmoil into sound form, while debut album opener"If You Let It" (streaming) methodically builds itself in ways that are at once operatic and experimental. Check out Thelma live at Alphaville in Brooklyn on April 29th. - Geena Kloppel

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