With a low and smoky voice, Katie Eastburn likes to let her inner cinephile run wild when composing songs with her latest band, KATIEE, a smart electronic quartet from Brooklyn.
In performance backstage at the Black Cat on Thursday night, Katie described their song “Sudden Fear,” for example, as inspired by the 1952 movie of the same title starring Joan Crawford.
KATIEE certainly have a sound appropriate for a modern reflection on such film noir, combining Katie’s sometimes hushed voice with unhurried percussion and ambient synths. Jim McHugh, Jeff Tobias and Jason Robira fill in the atmospheric sounds of assorted synths, saxophone, guitar and drums along with Katie, who plays a synthesizer herself.
Resulting tunes like “Bad and the Beautiful” are crisp and sometimes a little eerie. “Bad and the Beautiful” of course takes its title from another classic movie starring Lana Turner and Kirk Douglas.
The artful video for “Bad and the Beautiful” reflects the feeling of listening to KATIEE’s songs, and it also underscores Katie’s keen experience and continued interest in choreography.
Watch the newly released video for “Bad and the Beautiful” on YouTube:
That particular song is offered as a free remix accompanying purchase of the first 7″ single from KATIEE, “Passerby,” officially due for release on August 7 via Selfish Agenda. “Passerby” is a sophisticated, romantic reflection with a kiss of glam overtones alongside its poetic ambitions. The song winds down paraphrasing Humphrey Bogart’s character “In a Lonely Place: “I was born when you kissed me. I died when you left me. I lived a few weeks while you loved me.”
And the listening experience is akin perhaps to watching the last few rays of sunlight disappear under a very dark night sky.
Watch KATIEE perform “Passerby” in a fan video at Union Pool in Brooklyn on Feb. 16, 2015:
KATIEE perform the single of course, as well as B-side “Atlantic City,” which follows a movie of the same name starring Susan Sarandon and Burt Lancaster from 1980. The destination of “Atlantic City,” naturally, is lyrically painted as a place where lost souls may find hope.
KATIEE continue their tour Wednesday in Memphis and then travel through North Carolina and Virginia before returning to play Sunday at Trans-Pecos in New York. You may well be interested in checking them out if you own inner cinephile is attracted to noir pop delivered from intimate stages.