Finding the light by probing the darkness.
BY LAVINIA JONES
With her distinct
voice, sometimes warm and sultry, sometimes as squeaky as a wooden cart wheel,
and her mysterious, organic lyrics, it’s no wonder that Young God Records
founder and Swans conceiver Michael Gira took a shine to Larkin Grimm. In fact,
the only real surprise that came out of BLURT’s conversation with the nomadic
Grimm was that she had a phone.
“I had heard the
stuff that Michael was putting out, and some of it was just so intense and so
creepy in the most beautiful way. So I thought, ‘Here’s someone who isn’t going
to try to change me,'” explains Grimm, of her connection to Gira. Ever since
Grimm mailed him some raw demo songs a few years back, Gira has kept a close
eye on her, gently urging her to learn an instrument thoroughly and to further
evolve her singing. Now, two years later, Grimm is a multi-instrumentalist, one
of the most promising art Folk songwriters around, and a protégé of Gira’s at
the forefront of YGR’s future.
often-disturbing topics culled from her years of traveling and living in the
wilderness and creating a picturesque sense of unease in her listener has
become Grimm’s calling card. But Grimm’s religious Southern upbringing causes
her to sometimes question her own lyrical content. While Gira was producing
Grimm’s debut Parplar (released this
past October) he urged her to dig deep into her arsenal of troubled times to
reach her truest, most compelling songs.
Says Grimm of why
Gira understood her music so well and was able to help her develop it, “Both of
us have really explored some really dark and intense and taboo subjects in our
lives and in our music and basically found the light by being in darkness all