In 2012, Waxahatchee’s Katie Crutchfield teamed up drummer and then-boyfriend Keith Spencer to release an eclectic 22-track collection called Sounds Of Great Thunder, under the name Great Thunder. Now she’s decided to revisit some of the sounds of the era with a new EP called Great Thunder, which features songs that Crutchfield wrote for the project.
The release is due out on September 7 via Merge Records, and ahead of that, Crutchfield has shared a video for “Chapel Of Pines,” a minimal track led by acoustic guitar, piano, and Crutchfield’s vocals. The song has been around for a while, as there are clips online of Crutchfield performing the song live as early as 2014. In the new video, Crutchfield and a romantic interest build a shelter in a field, which is later infested by some creatures (aka people in animal masks).
She says that rediscovering and revisiting the original recordings, which “have mostly faded into obscurity,” with producer Brad Cook at Justin Vernon’s April Base studio in Wisconsin “was a cathartic experience.” She also describes the release as a departure from her recent work, saying, “I would say that it is a complete 180 from the last record: super stripped-down, quiet, and with me performing solo, it’s a throwback to how I started.”
Crutchfield described the original Great Thunder project in 2013:
“It started out as a project for me and Keith, to not feel like we had to start a band and make a certain genre of music. We wanted to do whatever we wanted. If we wanted to do a hardcore song, we’d do a hardcore song. If we wanted to do a piano ballad, we’d do a piano ballad. There are no real limits with it.”