Sometimes being able to buy old EP’s and demos of artists is a blissful thing and its such a case with Lauren Hoffman. She already releases demo’s for free on her website but I went to great lengths to track down and buy this six track EP. The key is that some of songs were recorded for Lauren’s first album but are completely different here.
Opener “Persephone” is a low-fi rock number with a sound like a rewinding tape breezing throughout it. It’s a different more downplayed version than the album and I enjoy it just as much. In the same vein “Blood” is much more creepier and sexy/sly than the album version which is more plugged. The marimba on the track really sets it apart as a b-movie rock anti anthem.
“Mother” is a cover and is actually my least favourite on the EP. It takes its time meandering through its emptiness and because its a more straight forward track it looses its edge to Hoffman’s originals which I prefer! Original is definitely the word I’d use to describe “Termite” which is possibly the best ever use of a low-fi bosa nova beat from a Casio keyboard I’ve heard. It’s menacing and delirious all at once and it was this song that hooked me into Lauren’s world. Finally the understated “Don’t Wanna Be Your Girl” is an acoustic guitar led track that’s very similar to the sound Lauren ended up with her second album “From the Blue House” – acoustic but always about to edge off the cliff.
The title track was released as a bonus download track which you can still get. Quite frankly its six minutes of perfect misery. It’s like someone took a recording of someone’s lowest ebb and then played it forwards and reversed at the same time and then at intervals rewinds and starts again.
This is a special EP that if you find it, or if Lauren offers it up for fun again – you simply must get. Excellent artistry.