Unknown Rooms: A Collection of Acoustic Songs

Unknown Rooms: A Collection of Acoustic Songs

For Chelsea Wolfe, every day is Halloween. Her music's haunted, and she's obsessed with love, death, and the absurd. The Greek chorus that follows her—wordless but moaning—throughout "The Way We Used To" sounds as if the sirens are calling her to the deep. "Spinning Centers" admits that death is spinning after her. Wolfe's voice remains high and spooked as creaky violins support her fall. "Appalachia" strips down the reverb considerably for a lurching folk song that brings her voice closer to the surface. "I Died with You" is flat-out creepy, with her voice multi-tracked and in its highest range. It serves as a 32-second intro to "Boyfriend," an acoustic track that looks upon a suffering relationship as a death sentence. Wolfe's belief in these songs and commitment to the material gives her license to exploit the melodrama. She isn't writing songs so much as little horror films, where no one gets out without serious damage to the soul.

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