Released May 2017
Any of the times I’ve met EMI at a party, she’s radiated an aura of celebrity, as though there’s a spotlight shining down on her through the crowd. I suspect this has to do with the careful orchestration of her image, not to mention numerous gorgeously elaborate photo collaborations with Lea Godoy. (Of which this cover art is a great example.) It’s therefore of little surprise to find that PLANET, her too-short, eight-song EP from May, is centrally concerned with appearances and identity. On “Like Us” she endeavors to find the ideal analog to a perplexing relationship, singing, “I’d say we’re Bonnie & Clyde, but they fucked up and died,” before concluding, “They ain’t make ‘em like us no more.” Throughout this album, EMI asks big questions of those close to her: How do you want to be treated, are you part of my life, are you in the squad, are we in this together? Her heart often held forth, vulnerable, in all this seeking still holding on to hope. Play “Fools,” produced by Sevn Thomas and Rex Kudo, as loud as your neighbors and your stereo will tolerate. Trust me here. Synth-heavy and singalong, this is great late-night driving music and one of my favorite local releases this year.