serpentwithfeet celebrating ‘blisters’ in Brooklyn
serpentwithfeet is the project of classically-trained vocalist Josiah Wise, who's currently based in NYC (after being born in Baltimore and spending time in Paris and London), where he's a regular in the queer music scene (maybe you saw him at The Maze in July). "I was like, ‘What would happen if I did my R&B thing over this classical shit?,'" Josiah said, and the result is his excellent debut EP blisters which is out today on the esteemed Tri Angle Records. Josiah wrote and produced the EP himself, with some additional production by his labelmate The Haxan Cloak, who's also recently lent a hand to HEALTH, LUH, and The Body. With the R&B/classical combo and the very recent release of a Frank Ocean album with an orchestra, it's hard not to compare this to Frank, and the haunting melodies of EP closer "redemption" bring back some memories of that first James Blake album. It reminds me of when "alt-R&B" did actually mean something that was alternative to the mainstream, but that's not to say serpentwithfeet is destined to stay small. Tri Angle Records may be best known for signing outsider electronic artists, but it also helped launched the careers of How to Dress Well and AlunaGeorge. It's feeling very likely that serpentwithfeet is in the latter group.
As mentioned in the quote above, serpentwithfeet is a regular in NYC's queer music scene, and he's now set to debut the live show for his new material. It happens on September 8 at The Mission (85 North 15th St in Brooklyn), and it doubles as a fundraiser organized by The Lot Radio, which will help the neighboring church renovate their pipe organ. The show is with special guest MIZAN. Tickets are on sale now.