During Sylvan Esso’s recent Studio 1A performance and interview, singer Amelia Meath outlined some of the difficulties playing alongside Nick Sanborn and his computer. Coming from the mostly a cappella Mountain Man, Meath was used to doing everything herself: supplying melody, rhythm, and changing each on the turn of a dime. With Sylvan Esso, she has to work with the computer, but that’s where the real beauty of the band comes from. The duo melds the organic and synthetic like no other.
In our Studio 1A, Sylvan Esso rebuilt the songs from their fantastic self-titled debut. While Sanborn triggered the loops and beats, he also sampled Meath’s voice to add otherworldly harmonies on top of everything. Meath carried it all with her distinctive voice, alternately acrobatic and measured. On “Wolf,” that vocal subtlety juts up against the song’s pop-ready appeal, making for a fascinating listen.
Watch “Coffee” below, and download “Wolf” in the player below the video.