by Allison Kridle
When most people think of girl bands, anything to the likes of Sleater-Kinney or The Runaways come to mind, especially during this time of political and social chaos when millions of women are screaming for justice and feel irate about too many heartaches to list. Don’t get us wrong, we are pissed and our art is showing for it, but we feel and experience far more than just anger--and we are resilient.
I found much needed peace and control in the quintet, Girl Gaze. Their new album Fade Out is soft, bluesy, and carries an all-around twinkling mellowness. Founded by five talents including, Michaela Passero (vocals and keys), Cat Delaus (vocals), Izzy Deranieri (bass), Julia Oppedisano (drums), Emily Charash (keys and guitar), Girl Gaze formed in 2017 in New Paltz, NY.
The track “Far” makes me feel safe in the album’s gloomy underbelly. All instruments find a spotlight and sound their jazziest and smooth. The opening keys glitter next to Passaro’s splintered voice as she sings, “Gone off on my own/lost and found alone/you couldn’t make me stay/I must go away.” The composition emits light, even when its dark moments offer more strength.
Girl Gaze’s airy instrumentation often sounds dainty and fragile; however, the musicians show that they are anything but. In the song “Melting,” Passaro sings, “I will win my heart back/worn and weathered/bound and tethered.” The chattering drum and whine of the guitar make you believe her heart will be intact in no time. Meanwhile, Delaus reaches sunlight in the track, “Sun Song.” Dealus sings with clarity, “I used to close my eyes when the day came round/It wasn’t for me I just wanted more stars back/you came along and you blinded me/who knew that life could ever be something so bright, so beautiful.”