Liz Harris' recordings as Grouper are many things, but accessible usually isn't one of them. Mixing atmospheric drones, looped guitars, and ethereal vocals, Grouper creates soundscapes that don't adhere to traditional song structures or pop touchstones. (When Harris released an album titled AIA: Alien Observer, it wasn't a stretch to infer that she herself was the alien.)
With "Vital," Harris' new single from the upcoming The Man Who Died In His Boat collection of unreleased songs, thankfully, her formula remains unchanged. If you listen closely, however, patterns become evident, melodies present themselves, and a beautiful new world emerges. "Vital" may not be music for singing along, but slipping into its velvety cocoon requires little effort. When the snow starts falling, when you climb in bed on a cold night, or when you're in need of some comfort, "Vital" might be exactly the sounds you want to hear.
Grouper—The Man Who Died in His Boat