It’s clear after listening to Chrysalia that Montreal-based producer/multi-instrumentalist Eve Parker Finely revels in dualities.
When asked about the title of her debut full length, Chrysalia, Eve Parker Finley points to the obvious word association of “chrysalis”, but also to a lesser known but equally evocative word. “Chrysalism: the tranquility and peace you feel when you’re indoors during a thunderstorm”. Although both words suggest metamorphosis and interiority, they are far from synonymous. In listening to Chrysalia, it is clear that the Montreal-based producer, multi-instrumentalist, media maker and facilitator, revels in this duality. Transformation and peace, chaos and stillness, Finley has crafted an album true to its title.
Chrysalia defies genre while also finding commonality between soundworlds that might otherwise be in opposition. In developing a creative practice at the intersection of contemporary classical, indie pop, electronica, and dance music, Finley’s songs feature lush string writing juxtaposed with beats that carry a lightness and ethereality about them. However, the strings and the electronic beats are never at odds with each other, but rather work in tandem. This is explicit on tracks like “The Rules” where the beats are a collaborative effort between synth and percussive strings , but also much more nuanced in Finley’s more atmospheric, drone-centric tracks (such as “Droney Discord,” as you can probably imagine).
Despite its disparate elements, Finley’s sound is incredibly unified. The interplay between the woodiness of the strings and the metallic, synthetic qualities of the electronics is world-creating and highly immersive. The opening track, “Meditation #2,” draws you in with a subtle drone beneath hymn-like, polyphonic strings, with Finley’s voice emerging as a completely organic part of the texture. “Alone/Together” features a driving rhythmicity led by the strings that then flows into “Come With Me”, where the synthetic pulse seems to be a natural extension of the directionality established by the synth’s acoustic counterparts. On “Come With Me”, Finley’s voice seems to be perfectly cradled within a world of her own creation, at ease but intentional.
In the closing track, “Toy Animal Contemplates Life,” Finley gives us a true finale. A music box-like keyboard line builds to a symphonic peak with a timbral and registral density, unlike anything we’ve heard previously on this album. In Chrysalia, an entire planet is constructed in front of us, and on “Toy Animal Contemplates Life,” it feels as though we are embarking on a journey to somewhere new to try it all over again.