Anna McClellan Shares Her Favorite Father/Daughter Records Releases
Ahead of the release of I saw first light, the songwriter shares four records that best define the label for her.
When you’re stalking around Bandcamp on any given Bandcamp Friday looking to round up your already-packed cart to an even fifty bucks, Father/Daughter tends to be a great place to land. In addition to hosting soon-to-be classics from the likes of Shamir, pre-mononym NNAMDÏ, Remember Sports, and Diet Cig, the label’s diverse roster of artists, genres, and compilations are pretty consistently interesting. I mean, what label’s discography has a better, more soothing color palette? And where else can you find Krill and LVL UP covering iconic Adam Sandler songs?
Among this interesting roster, though, you can also find the sophomore record from Omaha’s Anna McClellan, who’s also gearing up to release LP #3 this Friday. I saw first light continues her experimentation within the contexts of lo-fi bedroom recordings and folk rock, repurposing the jaunty piano rock of 2018’s “Heart of Hearts” on the less-predictable opener “Con S Sewer,” with the instrument weaving in and out of the following ten tracks. It’s both a suitable introduction to the unexpected turns the new record has in store, as well as to the label that houses it.
“I am so grateful to be part of this roster of bands that are bonded not by sonic aesthetics but a strong ethos of inclusion, visibility, and badassness,” she shares. “I’ve learned so much through my experiences with Father/Daughter. The folks behind the curtain, pulling all the strings: Jessi, Tyler and Andrew are, to quote The Bachelor, ‘Really in this for the right reasons.’ Eternally blessed and I can only strive to live up to the legendary catalog this label has built.”
Ahead of I saw first light’s imminent release (pre-order it here), we asked McClellan to list off a few of her favorite records her label has put out to date. “It was difficult to pick these four,” she clarifies, “and know it is only a tiny sliver of what F/D has to offer!”
My introduction to Father/Daughter was via Lisa Prank. By matters of circumstance and whim, I ended up riding along on a tour where she was opening. I got to know these songs in their live form first. When I hear them now, I am flooded with all the memories of that time and continually surprised how apt a soundtrack it is for that period. So much drama! But when I stop to separate my personal experience from the album and listen to the songs at face value, I’m struck by their infectious hooks and their seeming simplicity that grows more complex and layered with each listen. These songs hit on all levels of consciousness in my opinion. Love you, Robin.
Anjimile’s album Giver Taker is a tough act to follow in the F/D catalog! I’m honored to be releasing music alongside such a dynamic and playful musician. I think that’s the thing that strikes me the most about this collection of songs: Anjimile’s ability to tackle such heavy topics without the music losing its buoyancy. Listening to this album feels like being on a ship that’s weathered some storms, but just keeps straight bobbing.
I mean how could you not? Infinite Worlds. I like to imagine a world where these songs are endless, and somehow that world intersected with ours for the 28 minutes we get to experience this album. You know what I mean? Each song appears to not really begin or end, but exist as an excerpt of something larger going on that Lætitia, with her infinite wisdom, has conjured for us mortals to tap into, almost like buckets of water pulled up from a well…
Pllush! Stranger to the Pain is an emotional rollercoaster. Good for long drives on a dark highway, blurry street lamps, that kind of vibe. I’m not sure if it’s my album release week or the state of the world or my own biological workings, but I’ve been feeling particularly emotional lately. These Pllush songs have a keen way of pulling me out of my anxiety spiral and laying the feelings bare in front of me, creating a container for growth to occur. A great reminder that big emotions are not the exception, they can rule.