Christelle Bofale has a voice that could move mountains, that could change the tides. But the music that the Austin-based artist makes isn’t necessarily interested in such drastic overtures. It moves slow and circular, content to unfold incrementally. Bofale attributes the malleable, free flow of her songs to her Congolese heritage, and “U Ouchea,” the lead single from her debut EP Swim Team, stretches out to a luxurious seven minutes.
It glides along, guided by watery guitars and a pitter-patter of drums that sound like rain on a windowpane. It shifts from sunshine to twilight and back again. Bofale’s voice lilts into the backdrop, twisting up in it like a spell. It’s impressionistic and warm but steadfastly firm. She sings about figments of imagination and fears that glow and tightroping acrobats. It conjures up a world that feels at once peaceful and strained, at ease but at odds. Listen below.
01 “Moving On, Getting On”
02 “Love Lived Here Once”
03 “Origami Dreams”
04 “U Ouchea”
05 “Where To Go”
The Swim Team EP is out 5/31 via Father/Daughter Records. Pre-order it here.