quinnie - flounder Music Album Reviews

quinnie - flounder Music Album Reviews
The New Jersey indie-folk singer’s debut is a refreshingly modern take on classic themes of displacement, devolution, and love, of course. 

Wales, the Anglo-Saxon name for England’s first colony, loosely translates to the “place of the others.” When the world refers to you as a foreigner on your own land, it’s difficult not to adopt this lens. This identity crisis is the ontological dilemma of the Welsh. It’s the reason that the term hiraeth—an ache for a home you’ve never experienced and can’t return to—originated from this coastal region. quinnie, the New Jersey indie-folk singer, excavates this feeling—more gnawing than homesickness and more haunting than nostalgia—on her debut album Flounder. 

A song about gentle men and pleasurable oral sex, “Touch Tank,” garnered her an audience on TikTok in 2022, but the 21-year-old tackles contemporary discourse without making it feel like you’re scrolling through social media. Opener “Man” calls out abusers who co-opt femininity to disarm their victims: “No amount of nail polish could paint you a good man.” Even when she includes terms like “soft boy” and “iPod Touch,” Jake Weinberg’s cinematically homespun production means that the medieval acoustics and twinkling pianos sound timeless. Wind chimes, running water, and sounds of children playing paint scenes of youthful summers spent sneaking out bedroom windows for a stolen moment of tenderness. Disney movies teach you to wait for Prince Charming. Time exposes the men you date as dickheads disguised in Prince Charming cosplay. quinnie doesn’t lean on shock value, psychiatry, or somber pianos to carry the emotional weight. Moments of snark ease you into brutal truths: “You stole more of me than I’d care to admit.” 

Abusive relationships are disorienting. They can make you unrecognizable to yourself—a stranger in your own body. When quinnie wants to remember that old self who eagerly pursued love, she taps the rewind button on her cassette player between songs. “I can’t fucking wait till the day that I finally get to kiss you,” she sings on “itch,” yearning for a romantic connection to give her life meaning again. The rush is short-lived, like attention spans trained on dating apps engineered to resemble video games: “Would I die satisfied knowing that it could always get better than this?” It’s nearly impossible to surrender to the all-encompassing flame while third-degree scabs linger.

Listening to quinnie cuss feels like watching a toddler walk for the first time. You get the sense that rage is an emotion that’s been denied, which could explain why she delivers somber lines in a gossamer falsetto that almost reaches a twangy yodel. In the rock-inflected “Get What You Get,” her voice is almost smothered by deafening drums. The drums, like her unpleasant emotions that have been pushed down for so long, demand your attention. Popular music and media are admittedly a bit oversaturated with healing-your-inner-child discourse at the moment. With its nostalgic summer camp energy in songs like “Popcorn and Juice” and “Itch,” Flounder does risk entering Camp Rock soundtrack territory. Still, her lyrics are rich with vivid imagery: “An artifact of human existence/Is fossilized inside of me.” 

Childlike wonder is its own character on this album. It motivates her to approach the world with “despites.” Despite being mistreated, she’ll hold the door open for a stranger and savor the brief moment of warmth as their body brushes past hers. Despite the soulless digitization and mind-numbing online discourse, she’s gonna croon about vast bodies of water and ocean animals. Quintessential bedroom-pop “Touch Tank” compares an invasive hook-up culture to the experience of captive starfish and manta rays ogled and prodded by aquarium visitors. A loving partnership frees her from purgatory and on the penultimate, Celtic-inspired “Flounder,” she emerges with renewed vigor and an uninhibited voice: “Money talks but I can scream/Look at all this blue and green.”

In an interview with Vulture, when asked how she felt about receiving comparisons to fictional beings like fairies and elves, Caroline Polachek replied: “As a woman artist, it’s always a struggle to be thought of as human.” We’re so anthropocentric as a species and categorically cruel to other beings that association with non-humans carries the whiff of insult. While quinnie explores the theme of negative dehumanization in romantic relationships, she also reclaims it as escapism.

How glorious would it be if we could somehow turn back the hands of time to prevent our fish ancestors from growing legs and inhabiting the land? There’d be no taxes or credit scores, no need to be embarrassed by failing your road test three times, no understanding of sugar babies or alpha-male podcasts. Perhaps we could “devolve a bit,” as quinnie puts it: “Learn to love the simple shit.” None of us have experienced a world untouched by climate decay and profiteering tech companies. Flounder submerges us in baptismal primordial soup. The Industrial Revolution and Machiavellian men are artifacts of a cruel past. God has graciously unleashed the floods. Maybe we’ll get it right this time. 
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About Wanni Arachchige Udara Madusanka Perera

Hey, I'm Perera! I will try to give you technology reviews(mobile,gadgets,smart watch & other technology things), Automobiles, News and entertainment for built up your knowledge.
quinnie - flounder Music Album Reviews quinnie - flounder Music Album Reviews Reviewed by Wanni Arachchige Udara Madusanka Perera on March 07, 2023 Rating: 5


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