Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith :: The Aquarium Drunkard Interview

In the market for an expansive, dreamy headphone record par excellence? You couldn't do much better right now than Ears, the latest by Bay Area composer Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith.

Mining influences like the minimalism of Terry Riley, Suzanne Ciani and Laurie Spiegel, the films of Hayao Miyazaki, and the cartoons of Jean Giraud Moebius, Smith's vision is kaleidoscopic and breathtaking, equally evoking rich earthiness and cosmic expanses. It's an enveloping, moving record, blending woodwinds played by Rob Frye of Bitchin Bajas, bubbling arpeggios, and Smith's vocals, multi-tracked and densely layered.

AD spoke with Smith from her home, where she was prepping for her upcoming tour with Animal Collective, packing last minute provisions and gearing up for live performances.

Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith :: First Flight

Aquarium Drunkard: I have my own personal experiences listening to Ears, but I wonder: Were you trying to evoke anything like a specific mood on this record?

Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith: My intention was to create a sonic motion ride through a futuristic jungle. I wanted it to be heard straight through, from beginning to end, so that it feels like it has an intentional arc to it. Well, it's pretty straight "up," so it's more a ramp than an arc. I can't presume everyone will listen to it straight through, but that was my intention.

Only the good shit. Aquarium Drunkard is powered by its patrons. Keep the servers humming and help us continue doing it by pledging your support.

To continue reading, become a member or log in.