8 Songs, 23 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

This low key solo EP marks Nat Baldwin’s official debut. Though there are a number of hard-to-find avant-garde recordings from his early years at Wesleyan University still extant, Lights Out marks the birth of the spare, confessional, only fitfully experimental style that would come to characterize works like Enter the Winter and Most Valuable Player. Though fragments of Baldwin’s experimental background show themselves in the stray bursts of dissonance that cling to numbers like “Goodbye” and “Alone,” they act less as earnest forays into the avant-garde than as dramatic punctuation to the highly effective pop songs to which they are attached. Though Baldwin’s subsequent efforts would be more ambitious, Lights Out possesses a powerful often discomforting atmosphere of loneliness and emotional vulnerability that makes it a modern-day analogue to works like Nick Drake’s Pink Moon and Neil Young’s On the Beach; high praise, to be sure, but the breathtakingly raw melancholia of “Control” and the shivering intensity of “Alone” more than merit it.

EDITORS’ NOTES

This low key solo EP marks Nat Baldwin’s official debut. Though there are a number of hard-to-find avant-garde recordings from his early years at Wesleyan University still extant, Lights Out marks the birth of the spare, confessional, only fitfully experimental style that would come to characterize works like Enter the Winter and Most Valuable Player. Though fragments of Baldwin’s experimental background show themselves in the stray bursts of dissonance that cling to numbers like “Goodbye” and “Alone,” they act less as earnest forays into the avant-garde than as dramatic punctuation to the highly effective pop songs to which they are attached. Though Baldwin’s subsequent efforts would be more ambitious, Lights Out possesses a powerful often discomforting atmosphere of loneliness and emotional vulnerability that makes it a modern-day analogue to works like Nick Drake’s Pink Moon and Neil Young’s On the Beach; high praise, to be sure, but the breathtakingly raw melancholia of “Control” and the shivering intensity of “Alone” more than merit it.

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