“A collection of memories”: ‘Fall With the Lights Down’ Is Bathe Alone’s Nostalgic & Dreamy Reverie

Bathe Alone © Paula Harding
Bathe Alone © Paula Harding
Bathe Alone’s Bailey Crone dives into the beautifully cathartic depths of her new double EP ‘Fall With the Lights Down,’ an achingly visceral dream pop record built off memory and nostalgia, breathtaking soundscapes and soul-stirring singing.
‘Fall With the Lights Down (Louise)’ – Bathe Alone




I’m singing about all these memories that I just want to relive and exist in again. I want to be with those people in those places again. It’s a romanticized longing.

The wonderful thing about collages is that you don’t need to start in any one place.

So long as you’re taking in both the big picture and its individual parts, you’re sure to come away with a bit of inspiration and hopefully some understanding of the artist’s intent.

Bathe Alone’s new record isn’t intentionally structured as a collage, but to a great extent, it functions as one: Because no matter which song you start with, you’re inevitably bound to come away with the same sense of wonderment and nostalgia. A beautifully cathartic daydream, Fall With the Lights Down is a lush, atmospheric, and ethereal reverie built off memory and connections past and present. It’s an achingly, intimately human record plunging in to the artist’s very own history – from those she never knew who came before her, to her own bygone innocent youth, to the person she’s still becoming.

Fall With the Lights Down - Bathe Alone
Fall With the Lights Down – Bathe Alone
Pictures from the ’70s
Sick of watching dad’s TV
It’s over how I miss it
Memories from my kid head
Holdin on tight
Oh I dream of being here
high where I see city lights
Hills of my life
Oh I can see over
Missionary Ridge at night
– “Missionary Ridge,” Bathe Alone

Fully released August 4, 2023 via Nettwerk Music Group, Fall With the Lights Down is a stunning sophomore effort (if we can call it that) from Atlanta’s Bathe Alone. Comprised of two EPs – the six-track Louise, which released in October 2022, and the five-track Velma, which is newly out now – the follow-up to 2021’s debut album Last Looks continues in the footsteps of its predecessor, delivering an atmospheric dream pop experience that is as breathtakingly intimate and spiritually energizing as it gets.

It’s a captivating and cathartic best-foot-forward for Bathe Alone’s Bailey Crone, the Atlanta-based multi-instrumentalist who introduced her project only two years ago, and has been working closely with producer Damon Moon (Curtis Harding, Lunar Vacation & more) ever since.

Bathe Alone © Paula Harding
Bathe Alone © Paula Harding



Whereas Last Looks set a firm foundation of lush, sweeping, and stirring indie rock and pop brimming with both tension and release, Fall With the Lights Down‘s songs aren’t afraid of swimming without a life jacket – despite what its two cover arts, featuring Crone’s great-grandparents (named Velma and Louise, just like the respective EPs), would suggest!

“This record is really a collection of memories,” Bailey Crone tells Atwood Magazine. “Good and bad ones. I was really struggling with my mental health when I wrote the last record, Last Looks. I had finally gotten to a place where I felt like I was over the hill, and I had control back in my life. Last Looks was such a heavy record to me, and I wanted to keep that authenticity going, but I also wanted to include other things I was processing too that weren’t always so heavy. Things like friendships and nostalgic memories. It’s just a continuation of my story and life and what I’m processing at the time.”

“Sonically, this record is really exciting to me, too. Damon and I really hit some sort of groove together in the studio. We were taking more time on songs, and really saying yes to experimentation. There’s a lot of traditional instruments like guitar and drums, but Damon was always looking for a way to make it sound different or interesting. There’s so much glitter happening and things that sound musical that weren’t musical at all when we recorded them. We messed around with taking field recordings and moving around the harmonics in this program Melodyne, and making our own synth patches.”

“So like, what you think is a synth in ‘Awfully Quiet,’ is actually a sound effect of an old 1960’s show used for bat echolocation. Or a bunch of sounds in ‘Childhood’ are creaky metal music stands grinding against a splash cymbal, but it totally sounds like a synth after we tuned it to double the acoustic guitar’s melody. That type of experimentation just kept working and sounding good, and frankly, we just kept amazing ourselves, so that really inspired us to keep chasing these crazy ideas and push the limits of what we’d done in sound design.”

Bathe Alone © Paula Harding
Bathe Alone © Paula Harding



For Crone, this record represents an undeniable evolution in who she is as an artist and what Bathe Alone is becoming as a project.

“Damon and I make a really good team because I feel like I really care about cohesion within a record, and Damon really cares about color in a record,” she reflects. “Those things can technically be opposites. But somehow, I feel like the sound of Bathe Alone is both those things. This record really proved that. It’s a bigger, grander version of what we did before.”

“It’s gotten so open-minded sonically, but there’s so much glue happening that it all fits together to me. It’s like, yea we took two pieces of metal and rubbed them against each other, which is kind of horrific and ugly and reminiscent of a rusty playground, but we tuned the harmonics around and made it a synth patch that’s playing this melody alongside an acoustic guitar. That’s what I mean by color, but also cohesion. That’s what I love about writing with Damon, and this record as a whole, is truly a time capsule of us taking those risks.”

Some days are awfully quiet
You wait for night to tell your dreams about it
They stop to ask if you’re alright – right?
Charcoal, grass and ciders
You went one time and now it’s every other
They stop to ask if you’re alright -right?
Home, feeling low, feel at home
Filling up and flying low
Flying home, facing up
Facing home, you feel a lot
Feel alone
Feeling everywhere you go
Thought I told ya
But guess I was awfully quiet




It’s a bigger, grander version of what we did before. It’s gotten so open-minded sonically, but there’s so much glue happening that it all fits together to me.

As visceral as it is cerebral, Fall With The Lights Down is a pastiche of Crone’s past and present – a melting pot of personal reflections and candid observations, letters to loved ones and yearnings for what once was, and can never be again. She affectionately calls it “a sonic expression of nostalgic longing.”

“So, I had just finished writing the first record, Last Looks, and I feel like my writing style definitely changed going into the next record,” Crone explains. “Mainly because I had a bunch of exposure to the synths that Damon had just laying around all over his studio. And synths weren’t something I typically wrote with. I actually actively avoided them because I just didn’t get it. I only really had exposure to VSTs and virtual synths and got the impression they were kind of boring and stale and uninspiring. So I just dismissed them as an instrument altogether, and gravitated towards instruments I felt I could be more expressive on, like drums and guitar.”

“But after seeing the world of vintage synths from Damon, and how to use them in arrangements and how to make them lush and creamy, and how they don’t have to be this obnoxious thing I thought they were, I became so stoked to write with them. I wanted to get some real ones I could put in my lap and hook up to my guitar pedals and make soundscapes with. I was obsessed.”

“So when I look back on this record I actually hear my newfound love for synths and the discovery process unfolding in real time. I hear Childhood and I hear my Casio CT-310 I had just bought at a pawn shop. I hear 4u and hear how I kept my first performance of the pitch bend on my Roland JX-3P. I hear the flute solo in Waste It and can remember sweating over the keyboard as I’m trying to get this delay pedal to self-oscillate in just the right way. My vision for writing the record was one of discovery and fascination. I feel like by the end of it, the vision was pretty much the same, I wanted to keep writing with these new toys and just discover all the worlds they could make. It’s still that way to this day.”




Bathe Alone © Paula Harding
Bathe Alone © Paula Harding

Crone describes Fall With The Lights Down as a “memory mood-setter.”

The album’s title comes from a lyric on the very last song, “4u,” whose glistening, emotive synth pads prove to be utterly enveloping and intoxicating – a fitting mirror for Crone’s intense lyrics.

“That whole song is about someone who died young, and it compares life to a movie we all got into for free,” she says. “But this person never got to see how their movie ended. ‘Fall With the Lights Down’ was my way of saying I hope that when they left, they didn’t see it happen. I hope it was painless.”

Released slowly and in piecemeal throughout the past year, Fall With The Lights Down is also dedicated to Crone’s two great-grandmothers, whose pictures adorn either side of the record’s cover.

“Velma and Louise were their names. I had to ask my mom what their names were because I actually never met them,” Crone explains. “I have a complicated relationship with the idea of family and what makes someone your family. Both of my parents are adopted, and I have always wondered what my biological grandparents are like. I’ve only met one of them, but the idea that they’re out there somewhere is daunting. It’s like this black box that I don’t know what’s inside.”

“I feel strangely similar when I look at these photos of my adoptive great-grandparents. I never met them, so I wonder what they’d have been like. I feel a sense of longing when I look at them. Because I love my own grandparents so much, and I know I’d have loved them too. Their presence kind of encapsulates the theme of the record to me: I’m singing about all these memories that I just want to relive and exist in again. I want to be with those people in those places again. It’s a romanticized longing. Maybe that’s what nostalgia is to me. Whether I met them or not, I have nostalgia for them.”

Bathe Alone © Paula Harding
Bathe Alone © Paula Harding



The double-EP’s slow-and-steady release schedule might have meant fans were waiting longer for the full thing, but it enable Crone to dedicate ample time to nearly every one of the record’s eleven songs.

And truly, this is an all-hits, no misses dream pop experience. Highlights from the first EP Louise include “Decades & Dreams” and “Waste It,” both of which blend hazy shoegaze with tempered nuance and a delicate grace that puts emphasis on the artist’s mindful vocal performance and word choice.

Louise‘s last track “Animals & Trees” is an especially moving marriage of substance and sound, with a powerful message to save our environment and protect Earth’s wildlife. “Bathe Alone glows with a singular sonic and emotional radiance as she sings about animal rights and deforestation (quite literally, animals and trees),” Atwood Magazine wrote in a premiere published last year. “Her delivery is both critical and captivating; she sings with a dreamy, deeply heartfelt resonance: “Tear down their homes, looking for money, you try to find god, they can’t find family.”




BATHE ALONE’S URGENT & INSPIRING “ANIMALS & TREES” IS AN IMPASSIONED DREAM POP UPHEAVAL

:: PREMIERE ::

Velma is equally enchanting, with the cinematic “In Your Wake” creating a multisensory environment full of fiery synths, soaring and smoldering guitars, propulsive, churning drums, and vibrant vocals that bring the track’s multiple layers of instrumentation together.

It’s a favorite for Crone as well. “I genuinely like different ones for different reasons, but ‘In Your Wake’ is a definite standout for me. That one makes me feel good. I feel empowered and stoked to write music again whenever I hear it. Plus, Damon shredded some guitar in that one at the end, and let me tell you, he was having the time of his life. That memory always makes me smile.”




Velma’s final single was the subtle, spellbinding seduction “Missionary Ridge,” a radiant reckoning through memory lane that mixes turbulent, deep-diving lyrics into a soothing serenade that eventually breaks out into a no-holds-barred guitar solo.

“This is one of my favorite songs on the record,” Crone smiles. “It’s all total nostalgia, taking me back to my grandparent’s house in Chattanooga. Some of my memories growing up there were of such mundane things, but as I grow older, I’ve realized how important those memories are. My hope with this song was to pay tribute to that place and those times that feel so far away now. I worked with some close friends, Nic Huey and Paula Harding, to create a video that sort of captures the feeling of looking back on those memories as an adult.”




Velma is also home to some of Bathe Alone’s favorite lyrics – a part of the songwriting process Crone feels particularly strongly about.

“The lyrics have to mean something to me, or I feel disingenuous,” she admits. “I get reminded of how I felt when I wrote these songs every time I hear them. Which can be a nice feeling or actually be a real bummer sometimes. It’s like flipping to a page of your diary from a really bad day.”

“I’d say my favorite lyrics are from the song, ‘4u.’ It was a rough one to write but also so cathartic. Being vulnerable doesn’t come naturally to me, but I really feel like those lyrics are so authentic to how I was feeling that it made processing that grief a little easier in the moment. I’m so glad I did that. That song is so necessary to me.”

Supposed to die old, but what can you do
Don’t leave before the movie ends
’cause it ends happy
Hope you find
Heaven on Earth on the outside..
Can’t stay here, forever young
It won’t end fair
‘Cause you got in this movie for free
Hope you find
Heaven on Earth on the outside…
For you, would you fall,
Would you fall with the lights down?




Bathe Alone © Paula Harding
Bathe Alone © Paula Harding

Dreamy escape that it is, Fall With the Lights Down conveys Bathe Alone’s strong emotions around memory, time, and the people and places that shape us.

That undeniable truth is ultimately what makes this set of songs so powerful – and while this writer would argue that it really doesn’t matter what order you listen to them, the way this double EP is designed (starting with Louise and “Some Things Never Change,” and ending with Velma and “4u”) proves particularly enchanting, as Bathe Alone take us on a soul-stirring sonic and emotional rollercoaster of cathartic highs, lows, and in-betweens.

As far as takeaways are concerned, Crone is quick to offer the same advice she learned over the course of creating this record: “Make art and explore, explore, explore!” she shares. “Follow the rabbit holes, reverse it, slap some reverb on it, record it. The worlds that music makes is all in our heads.”

Experience the full record via our below stream, and peek inside Bathe Alone’s Fall With the Lights Down with Atwood Magazine as Bailey Crone goes track-by-track through the music and lyrics of her double EP!

— —

:: stream/purchase Fall With the Lights Down here ::
:: connect with Bathe Alone here ::
‘Fall With the Lights Down (Velma)’ – Bathe Alone



:: Inside Fall With the Lights Down ::

Louise

— —

Some Things Never Change

I basically covered the song Last Looks from the previous record. But made it a little lo-fi interlude version. I added the lyrics “some things never change” at the end though, because I feel like I’m still processing and thinking about it, and maybe always will be.

Decades & Dreams

I surprised my best friend Jasmine by taking her 7 hours away to see a Beach House concert for her birthday. She had no idea where we were going that whole time until we got there. It was her favorite band, and she had never seen them before. It’s one of my favorite memories. I got home and tried to write a Beach House inspired song about it all. I love all the upbeats on the flute synth, I was really trying to channel something from Teen Dream. This song is for her. That’s her in the music video with me too.

Waste It

This one is about a different friendship I had that turned sour. Not all memories are good. This was the first time I felt like I called someone out in a song for being a bad friend. It’s pretty vague on purpose, but I know exactly what it’s about.

Once More

This is about that same friend. They were a bit of a self-sabotager, and it was becoming a repeat problem for them. As I’ve gotten older I’ve gotten less tolerant of being around that energy. I just know they’ll do it again, or once more, if you will.

Childhood

My childhood dog died when I was in 4th grade. I didn’t really think about the concept of death before that. I knew what death was, but wasn’t actively thinking I’d lose my dogs one day. This song is more from the perspective of me as an adult looking back at that. I feel like I became hyper-aware of the concept of loss after that with lyrics like “I would from then on be afraid”. I view that time as the milestone in my life where I went from ignorance is bliss, to dreading the inevitable.

Animals & Trees

I’m really amazed at how this song came about. It’s freakish. It shouldn’t have happened like this. But basically, I wrote another song called Animals & Trees. It was a bit more driven with chugging guitars and was way faster paced. We kept that song for quite a while as we continued with the record. Eventually, Damon and I realized that that song just didn’t fit. It was too different, and frankly I just didn’t care for it anymore. I told Damon I’d just re-do the song and went home and essentially covered my own song. I used the same lyrics, but the vibe was different, and had different chords. In the studio the next day, we somehow realized that this new song was in the exact same key as the old one and tempo as the old one. I was facepalming. But then Damon decided to reverse the whole song and layer it into the new cover version. It fits perfectly as this soundscape in the background that comes and goes. So for the new version of Animals & Trees, all of the reversed audio is the entire old version. I still don’t know how that happened. The universe is weird.



— —

Velma

Fall With the Lights Down - Bathe Alone

— —

In Your Wake

I was writing about wanting to take control of my life. Sometimes it feels like the universe has other plans. But there’s always been a fight in me that wants to get up and do something about it. When I sing about “wake” to me it means someone’s wrath or willpower or energy. It’s kind of an angry feeling to me. It’s like my own fire that’s hard to describe. It can be empowering to change your own life and become super stubborn about it.

Missionary Ridge

I was reminiscing about my grandparent’s house in Chattanooga, Tennessee. That place has this magic to me. I, of course am seeing that place through the rose-colored lenses of a child, but still, being in Chattanooga makes me feel safe and at home. The view of the city lights from up on the ridge at night is truly something.

Awfully Quiet

I’ve often been called “the girl who always smiles” growing up. I’m pretty happy and always trying to make people laugh. But at the same time, I’ve had my own troubles and trauma in life that I’m constantly processing behind the scenes. I just don’t like to burden people with it. Mental health is a really important thing to me, and sometimes the people in your life that are the happiest are actually just the best at hiding or compartmentalizing their trauma. I feel like when I started releasing songs, I was being really honest and writing about my losses and griefs and very dark stuff. But I also found out that people couldn’t understand the words because I guess I don’t pronounce when I sing. In a way, knowing that people can’t understand me is freeing, it’s like I can say whatever I want and have this cathartic process of that’s honest and vulnerable and like therapy. But on the other hand, what if I want people to understand me? What if I’m trying to say something or ask for help, and nobody can understand me? This song is just a commentary on that whole concept. It sucks to feel unseen. There’s a part where I’m mumbling all these real and dark thoughts on purpose. I’m mocking myself and my own singing style here. And then the hook is, “thought I told ya, but guess I was awfully quiet”. It’s like, my true honest thoughts are all out there for the taking. But maybe I just said it too soft.

Blue Days

This one talks more about mental health. The whole first record really was about that. But it’s really nice to have some good days. At the end, I had opened my window to record whatever was happening outside. My neighbor’s kid was playing so loudly and screaming. And the birds were all out and about. Damon and I had also sampled and changed the notes around to all these old symphonic recordings. That song is so cinematic and experimental, and I’m so proud of it. But I do have a lot of feelings remembering where I was when I wrote it. It’s hard to revisit, but I’m thankful music is such an incredible outlet.

4u

As far as songs that mean the most to me personally, I think this is the one I’d save from a burning building. I really feel like this is the art I’m meant to make.

— —

:: stream/purchase Fall With the Lights Down here ::
:: connect with Bathe Alone here ::



— — — —

Fall With the Lights Down - Bathe Alone

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? © Paula Harding

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