Phoebe Bridgers - Copycat Killer
Phoebe Bridgers' sophomore album Punisher solidified the songwriter's style with some of her most well-constructed and emotionally moving songs. Copycat Killer gives four songs from Punisher a second look, reworking the arrangements with just Bridgers' vocals and string arrangements by composer/conductor Rob Moose. While the EP is short, flying by in less than 13 minutes, each song imaginatively recasts its original version. The Punisher version of "Kyoto" was a dynamic pop tune made up of perky horn parts, an upbeat tempo, and a soaring chorus. The Copycat Killer version strips the song of its nervous excitement, leaving Bridgers' circular melodies bedded by droning, cloudy violin and cello harmonies. The focus shifts from catchy vocal lines and powerful rock energy to the disaffected sadness of the lyrics. Conversely, "Chinese Satellite" replaces the slow and dreamy wandering of the original arrangement with sharp stabs of bowed strings. Bridgers' quietly unsatisfied indie rock songs take on a more cinematic quality with Copycat Killer's tense strings. On "Punisher" in particular, Moose and Bridgers push the soundtrack effect. The original song included strings, but buried them deep in the mix beneath foggy lo-fi guitars and reverby production. Paring back the arrangement to nothing but strings and vocals emphasize the parts of the string charts modeled after any number of Disney scores or musical theater productions. Copycat Killer converys a different kind of emotional heaviness than Punisher, and serves as a fantastic counterpoint for the more indie-oriented originals. More than anything, these spare and fantastical readings of Bridgers' songs speak to both the versatility and singularity of her songwriting, which manages to be gripping in whatever form it takes.
Kyoto (Copycat Killer Version) 3:01
Savior Complex (Copycat Killer Version) 3:24
Chinese Satellite (Copycat Killer Version) 3:30
Punisher (Copycat Killer Version) 2:56