With her album Gilly, Gillian Rae Perry addressed traumatic events, vulnerability and loneliness. Now, she is taking listeners on a journey through a fairy-tale style story in Lost Children. Over the six tracks of the EP, she tells the story of five children stolen by mysterious shadows while diving deeper into a harrowing expedition through the subconscious
The EP was originally written for dance and film but translates into a dark tale that is much more than what it first appears to be. The eerie tones are different to the soothing and vulnerable notes of her last release showcasing the versatility of her musicality. Merging contemporary, classic and avant-garde musical styles, she draws you into the story with effortless ease.
The EP opens with the aptly titled ‘Meeting’ which grabs your attention with the spoken word opening. It is like the opening line of a book being narrated to a delicate yet somewhat eerie melody. There is a dramatic feeling to the music that you can easily see playing out on the stage. While the vocals introduce you to the story, the music brings the movement and experience of the tale to life. You can imagine the children playing to the plucked tones of the melody only for everything to take a more sinister turn. This track is really the perfect opening to the story of the EP and beautifully sets the stage with vocals and captivating music.
‘Seeing’ has a lighter and almost whimsical feeling to the opening. There is a touch of whispers to the soundscape that makes you think of spirits beckoning you closer and down the rabbit hole. The theatrics of the opening track continues to captivate in this track but they bring a very different feeling. The strings bring a touch of anxiety to the soundscape that gets your heart rate slightly up. This rises for a rather intense sound that makes you think of running through the woods like something is chasing you. The vocals call out from the mists of the melody adding a somewhat disorientating edge to the track as you have no idea where to turn.
The gentle tones that open ‘Speaking’ allow your heart rate to settle after the last song. There is a yawning feeling to the music as it stretches out far toward the horizon while bringing a glint of light. It is a very understated opening that slowly works through your senses and seriously keeps you hooked. The vocals are otherworldly on this track they airy wisp through against the piano line. While airy, there is a serious haunting edge to the vocals that send shivers racing down your spine. There is a darkness that comes through in the second half of the track that changes the entire feeling of the track before settling again. The story of the EP continues with spoken word vocals at the end of the track.
‘Hearing’ has you on edge from the first note that sets the hairs on the back of your neck on edge. The dramatic feeling of the music sweeps through you letting you know that something is seriously wrong. The rolling drums have your heart racing and you can feel a building of tension through the soundscape. As the drums drop, avant-garde tones breathe out against your ears and make you feel like there is someone behind you. There is a very strange feeling to this track as it takes you through a range of emotions.
The light note that ended the last track is picked up by the opening of ‘Feeling’. There is a melancholic feeling to the overall tone of the strings in this track. The spoken word vocals pick up the story again and fills you with the pain of the children being taken away. The light tones of the piano line mix beautifully with the sadness of the strings. The melodic vocal flows provide the voice of the children as they plea for help. It is a really poignant track and one of the most emotive of the EP. The movement of the melody is masterful as the piano line dances around you after you have felt the weight of the melancholy and pain.
The EP comes to a close with ‘Sleeping’ and the deep string line that opens it. The spoken word vocals are filled with a positive vibe while the music dampens this. The mixed emotions of this opening fill the soundscape as you are pulled into the track with the bittersweet feelings of something wrong. The whispered vocals come from all directions and flow into seriously dramatic tones. You can easily see this track play out in your mind as if it were on the stage. Each note adds to the dramatics and brings the overall story of the track to life. The vocals call for help while the beats and strings fill your chest with a sense of panic.
Gillian Rae Perry has a dramatic play running through your brain with the dramatic and theatrical tones of Lost Children. Each track is an act in the story bringing dramatic flairs and pulses of colour to your mind. While there is a clear story to the EP, there is also a deeper meaning that is waiting for you to unearth it.