I’m Southern f*cking Baptist!
October 12, 2021 8:03 PM   Subscribe

Let's talk about and listen to Ethel Cain. Her music has been described as an unforgiving portrait of Southern Baptist America and it's been said she fears no darkness. You might enjoy the videos for Crush, God's Country and The God (might be NSFW in some jurisdictions, caveat clicker) and her Soundcloud.

Cain is captivating, beautiful, and unabashedly feminine. Her music is tinged with a morbid Americana, her lyrics are at times bleak to the point of recommending her a psychiatrist. All of this is, of course, exactly the point… Cain isn’t looking through the past with rose-tinted glasses, she’s dredging up the horrors faced by America’s most betrodden. As such, Cain serves as a spokeswoman for America’s underbelly – she isn’t glorifying the violence she’s faced from these institutions, she’s simply reporting it.
posted by signal (6 comments total) 25 users marked this as a favorite
Wow, love it. Thanks for sharing.
posted by Braeburn at 1:15 AM on October 13 [1 favorite]

Really love this girl's work - have been listening for about six months now. It should be noted that Ethel Cain is a persona adopted by singer/songwriter/producer Hayden Anhedönia, so I wonder how much of her is a put-on or, at least, dramatically embellished. If you follow her Twitter, you will see what I mean. What does seem genuine is her roots in, and highlighting of the poverty that has wrecked much of America - this is where much of her poetry lies. Another thing about her underplayed, sometimes unmentioned, is her trans identity, almost to the point that I feel like we're moving beyond defining artists via their gender/sexual identity. A lot of layers here, and I love her ambition - I think in that interview (or some other place as I read this a couple of months back) she mentions that her first album will be a portrait of America on the level of Bruce Springsteen. Not setting her sights low, this one.
posted by BigBrooklyn at 6:51 AM on October 13 [4 favorites]

I'm trying to think why this haunts me so

a lot of 'stuff' is produced to appear haunting, to evoke a feeling of hauntingness.. but this really haunts me
posted by elkevelvet at 8:02 AM on October 13

Cain/Anhedönia is to music as Caitlín Kiernan is to fiction, except you need to swap God for the various enties of the Weird. It made me excited to read Threshold again.
posted by GenjiandProust at 3:13 PM on October 13 [2 favorites]

I read Pitchfork's breathless feature article on her. There's something deeply fishy about this.
posted by Jessica Savitch's Coke Spoon at 5:48 PM on October 14

Thanks for this! Crush sounds so much like one particular 90s song I thought for a moment it was a cover... but I can't place the song. Anyone here got any ideas?
posted by EXISTENZ IS PAUSED at 8:34 PM on October 16

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