Born and raised in Australia, singer-songwriter Harp Samuels’ latest release, a self-released EP called Even There, takes his neo-folk template and slathers on a thick layer of ’80s-style synthesizers. Today we are excited to premiere the latest single from the album, a track called “Faking.” It’s based around a series of interlocking synthesizer lines, adding gentle vocals and electronic drums to create an emotional sound that wouldn’t be out of place in the latest season of Stranger Things.
In fact, the swirling synths of that show’s intro, composed by members of the post-rock band S U R V I V E, is an excellent reference points. The synths ascend and descend in dramatic fashion, with melodic accouterments entering the mix from time to time to keep things interesting. The song breaks down into two distinct sections – in fact, at around the three-minute mark, the listener may assume the song is winding down to its conclusion, horns adding a dramatic touch and the chorus of synths starting to wind down. For the last two minutes, the song takes an ambient turn, with ethereal instrumental notes slowly turning more discordant before returning to a tuneful place.
“Faking” is all about addiction. ‘You came to stay / you said we’d play / You paint my place while I search for grace,’ said Samuels. “Addiction redecorates and changes your world. It shows up to party and leaves a mess. I had a series of painful events in life and wound up with substance addiction. I wanted to work with a ‘spacey’ kinda sound and vibe that reflects the feelings that come with it. There’s the overwhelming build as it takes over and the discordant section at the end, which metaphors the unfulfilling and bitter taste that you’re left with. The song kinda follows the ‘wave’ and journey of an encounter with addiction.”
A conceptual project, the EP is a major departure from the electronic-tinged folk/soul of his previous releases Wanting and Breathe. “Faking” and the other tracks on Even There will be released on August 14, 2019.
Even There EP track list