Hatchie has found a way to combine dreampop with classic rock progressions, allowing for that “jam” mentality within the glossy modern sound one would hear on the radio – her debut album Keepsake is reimaging how the past would sound today.
Back in May of 2018, a short and sweet 5 song EP titled Sugar & Spice was released by a fresh-faced young talent out of Australia named Harriette, under the moniker Hatchie. Three seconds into that EP, Hatchie greeted the listener with an explosion of glittery, shoegaze, dreampop progression that landed her the hype surrounding the now released debut LP Keepsake. The sound she and her band were projecting out into the world was not necessarily new, rather, reimagined.
The new-aged genre of Bedroom Pop has allowed for this creation of gorgeous lo-fi, dreamy reverbed instrumentation that one can accomplish from well, their bedroom. Hatchie essentially stepped into this soundscape as a teacher of sorts. Through the cooperation comprising a team of talented musicians, she took the d-mixolydian progressions one might find littered in classic rock from the Grateful Dead era and brought that into this modern DIY genre heavily focused on the jazzy Major 7th.
Listen: ‘Keepsake’ – Hatchie
Keepsake naturally picks up where Sugar & Spice left off. They could have easily kept a song or two from that acclaimed EP, perhaps still garnering the same praise, but instead, tote 10 new tracks, most of which near 5 minutes in length, all of them gorgeous in their own right. Kicking off with “Not That Kind”, Hatchie lets the listener know that she’s not going to be pigeon-held, singing the emotional “Oh, fate keeps trying to find me / But I’m not the kind of / Girl to let it define me” in the tracks chorus foreshadows a consistent multitude of interpretations within her songwriting. On one hand, it can play out as an obvious love ballad, on the other, it can appear as a song about self-worth. Through writing alongside her guitarist and friend, Joseph Agius, their allows for more than one voice to be heard within each song on the LP.
Initially released as a lead up single to the album, “Without a Blush” shows the emphasis on a darker, more intense sound, separating itself and showing the evolution from her past work. The track is Hatchie putting her put down through the use of a powerfully deep, echoing bass, contrasting her lovely vocals like a flash flood on a sunny afternoon. This interpolation can also be seen on fifth track “Unwanted Guest” where she notes “Put me on your list of hearts to haunt / I’ll haunt you back” continuing on with this darker theme.
“Obsessed” showcases Hatchie’s ability to be in control. The BPM goes at a fairly quick rate, but that does not sway where she paces herself inside of that beat. Acting as the Sun to which the artistry gravitates around, it allows for refreshing changes tonally, while still having Harriette play towards her strengths vocally. Whether it is a track like this where she stars at the forefront, or one like “Her Own Heart” where she might be heard more in the back, Harriette still remains the focal point.
Watch: “Obsessed” – Hatchie
Keepsake certainly does its job in living up to the hype. A bevy of tours on the way including a September North America tour, Hatchie’s stock seems poised to continue on a rise within a genre that’s seemingly still reaching its peak. All the pieces are there for this polished, indie-rock darling to reach the ranks of fellow tourmate and top band Alvvays, the only thing left to do, is wait.
📸 © 2019