Sweetcreem is an insatiably unique, yet virtually unknown (until now) force rising in the Boston underground scene after her March debut self-released EP ‘Evrybdy Know‘. Dig through your collections and try to pinpoint a voice and musical texture as familiar yet reclusive as these arrangements and vocals that have been gently shredding the fabric lining of my monitors the past few months.
The bass booms relentlessly off the walls & out into the city-sky of this anti-pop record. Seemingly superfluous shutters of lasers and vibrations cross the soundscape of the opening track, ‘NO$T’ until fitting in like a child-hood puzzle in an eerie conflictual swell of emotion with the playfully ironic circular dirge of a simple synth sample. The lyrics open new universes of memory & much like the tempo of the record, diverts & changes course at the slightest hint of predictably.
‘I Learned to read from crayons at the age of 3
pulled a yellow from the box and it said Macaroni & Cheese
begged my mom to make some strained ramen noodles
its real easy to get things right when they are made to be simple’
These opening lyrics set the stage for an album so real, the depiction & emotive tone may as well be alien in nature. The child-like, androgynous voice floating just at the surface of the music, ebbing & flowing with the rhythm, are reminiscent, from my perspective, of early Jana Hunter of Lower Dens in its frank posture to expose the obvious double standards of emotion taken for granted.
During our conversation at Barismo on Cambridge St. in Cambridge, MA, Murdoc, a service dog sits under our table. He raises his head & torso occasionally & in between occasions wags his tail at me. Sweetcreem & I talk about hitchhiking across the country, making music & access to emotion. What is most resounding about Sweetcreem’s music & personage is the quietude of atmosphere that add lightness to a city weighed down by cement & claustrophobic transit systems & roads.
‘I walk dogs… I don’t like bosses so I’m just around dogs all day.’ it says between sips of tea & bites of a pastry. ‘My voice is shot but this tea will help a bunch.’ We talk about our personal experiences in the service industries as well of those of our friends ‘… Every boss I’ve had I have slowly built a distaste for… the position of a supervisor seems so arbitrary to me & never does to them.’
Nearing the end of the interview, my interview point is regarding the albums dedication ‘To Rudeboy’. Sweetcreem sighs with remorseful acceptance & its words become more contemplative and heavy. ‘… We balanced each other out like Yin & Yang… We traveled together.’
‘Across the country? where did you go?’
‘oh geez, everywhere 43 states in lots of circles… it was my alternative to sleeping outside in the winter… the highs were higher but the lows were lower.’
I sit wide-eyed and sip the bitter ends of my coffee. ‘I would be screaming, naked with a bunch of musician friends on a beach with a garbage bag full of potato chips or literally fighting my way from an attacker to walk down the Jersey turnpike in the rain at 2am.’
‘Did you have Murdoc? How has he been?’
‘Murdoc’s always good, I met My dog on the road & he’s my world.’
The last track ‘No Thing’ is my favorite example of rhetorical combustion & analyzes the dulling razor thin distinction between laughing & crying. The internal conflicts of Sweetcreem, who chooses to remain nameless (when I asked about preferred pronouns ‘it’ was the response), hang about like an empty monument in the sun.
‘Nobody Thinks its funny that I
can’t stop laughing…
I wish that everybody had
the fun I’m having’
Clips of Andy Kaufman skip in the background that establishes the experimental nature of this album that builds as a sort of biographical emotional journey. ‘I wrote the songs in 2015 & recorded them in late 2017… I try to make myself really feel something when I make a song. If I’m listening to a work in progress & I start crying tears of joy or sadness, or dancing uncontrollably, or laughing, or my heart rate is rising, or I feel a deep sense of peace – I know that its going somewhere.’
Cover Photo: Sheri Ferneaux
Portraits: Ethyn Connors
Chris Hughes is a music editor & music journalist for bostonhassle.com. They can be reached at [email protected] or @crsjh_ via instagram and twitter.