Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Today’s selection, featured on the Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole, is “Blank Maps” by Cold Specks from the 2012 album I Predict A Graceful Expulsion on Mute.
>Cold Specks is Al Spx, an London-based Ontario-raised singer/songwriter with a beautiful, resonating voice. She doesn’t need much but some hushed guitars, some light strings, and a muted piano to carry her message. Citing Tom Waits and original gospel singer Sister Rosetta Tharpe as influences, the completely self-taught Spx identifies her own music as “Doom Soul” and evokes a tenderness in the sparse arrangements that will have a haunting effect. Part of the appeal of Cold Specks’ songs, though, is her effortless combination of youthful innocence and wary experience, which you can hear most poignantly in today’s featured song, “Blank Maps,” as she swooningly sings, “I am I am a goddamn believer.”
If you missed out on hearing her live set at KEXP’s studio last May, check it out here. And if you’re patient enough, Cold Specks is making the rounds this summer and will be hitting up Seattle’s newest venue, Barboza on August 15th. Find out more tour dates on her website. For now, enjoy the official music video for “Blank Maps”: