Something I've been noticing a lot more of this year than I ever have before are bands that mix folksy/rootsy sounds with electronic production. And every musical instinct I have tells me that it shouldn't work but each band that keeps making these experiments proves me wrong. One such artist is Chase Coy
(also of Sun Culture). We had a chance to talk with Chase about two of his recent songs and what these genre experiments meant to his growth as a solo artists Check out "Youth" and "Like Sin" as well as our exclusive chat with Chase.
You've dropped two tracks from your upcoming record, Youth -- the titular track as well as a song called "Like Sin." In the song you repeat the refrain, "hurts like sin." What does that mean to you?
Chase Coy: The allusion isn't supposed to be strictly religious, though it certainly has some particular meaning to me because of how I was brought up. There are actually a few references to religious ideas or concepts like that on this album; they all have a certain meaning to me, but they're also powerful symbols on their own. They mean a lot of different things to different people, and that's what I love about religion in literature and art. In this particular instance, the full line reads something like "you smile like a saint, but you hurt like sin," and it's mostly just a way of saying that beneath these good intentions, something bad and possibly hurtful is waiting. Reuniting with your former love may seem like a good idea in the moment, but there will be consequences later that have to be dealt with by both parties. There was something toxic about the relationship I'm talking about in that song, and I wanted to get that across.
There are the faintest hints of trap music in what are otherwise primarily pop-folk songs. What made you decide to include elements of a genre that seems almost anathema to folk and then, also, how did you make it work?
I honestly didn't overthink the production of this album other than making music I wanted to listen to. I just came off working on an indie rock album last year with my project Sun Culture, and it had reminded me how freeing the recording process could be for me if I allowed it. Writing is one of my great loves, but so is production, and I felt motivated to really push this album to include more elements of music that I'm interested in now. I wanted to marry where I came from (folk) with where I'm at now (indie/pop). I think it was a natural extension of the work I've been doing as an artist and producer, and I'm very excited to share it with my fans as the foundation for my music moving forward.
You have a big role in the production of these songs. How important is it, to you, to maintain that sort of creative control over your works?
Unbelievably important. I've gotten better at collaborating with others as I've grown older, but I'm very particular when it comes to my own songs. That's why I wrote the album myself and produced it as well. I just have trouble letting go and stepping back with someone else at the reins. I like to have a hand in each step of the process, even as I've learned to lean on my talented musicians more.
Can your fans look forward to more of this sort of textured folk on your upcoming LP?
I think people will be really excited with what they hear. But I'm just saying that because I really like it! It features a lot of what people love most about the music I've released in the past, while also making sure to bring something new to the table. At the end of the day, I think this album represents my best songs to date, and I think people will feel that passion come through in the songs. It's not just an album to me, it is a collection of 12 songs that sums up some of the worst and best moments of my life, and hope that other people will hear it and be able to relate. I began making music as a way to connect with people, and that's still what keeps me getting up every morning to polish off new songs. I'm so thankful to have fans who listen and appreciate the work I do.