Throughout the past three weeks, a low-key Soundcloud account, Baby Perrier, has released six total tracks, all marked by their dreamy, lo-fi quality. Whereas so many artists comb through their work slowly and obsessively, New York-based Seashell Coker favors an artistic approach that’s far more visceral, more personal. Uploading songs to her account is never an overwrought decision, which adds to the authenticity of this music project.
On “last breath,” the key cut that turned us onto BP, Coker’s vocals are pitched way up, riding in a familiar sonic lane as artists beneath PC Music’s umbrella. “Boy, I need you like my last breath,” she nonchalantly asserts over a spacey, synthesized instrumental. The tracks sound almost like demos, though this trademark rough edge is what makes unearthed Soundcloud artists so enticing, similar to outsider art—a rare, musical landscape with no barriers to entry.
We recently caught up with Coker to dissect her previously overlooked project, touching on her musical background, love life and A.G. Cook.
On her earliest music memories:
“Ever since I remember, my mom would play the oldies station and we had a basket of cassette tapes [that] I would listen to. Maybe I’m predisposed to making music cause my dad produces from time to time; he always played the beats he made in the car when he would pick me up from school. In elementary school, I found a Fall Out Boy song and downloaded it from the Internet, and that’s when I started listening to alternative music; my parents never played that kind of music, so I was shocked by how it sounded. My mom threw away my My Chemical Romance CD when I was in middle school cause she didn’t approve, it was kind of funny.”
“I don’t want it super attached to me; at first I was doing it kind of as a joke, just for fun, but then I got into it [and] I guess u can say it’s like my performance art. I love Perrier water, so that’s how I got the name. It’s like ‘Baby Perrier’ is more cute [and] sweet than how I am IRL. I can be really cold and quiet and a little bitchy cause I’m a Capricorn, but ‘Baby Perrier’ is like the Pisces in me—daydreamy and emotional.”
On her sound:
“I like high-pitched synth sounds and I like stuff to sound kind of magical and a little distorted. I like it to be cheap sounding, I guess. I don’t want it to be all produced like drake cause that’s not the direction I’m going in. If I like how it sounds, I’ll post it on Soundcloud [because] it’s more for me and less for other people. It’s my therapy, [so] I’m not trying to impress anyone. plus I’m not that great as a producer—I write n produce everything myself—so it sounds a little wonky, but I still like it.”
“I guess I can say my biggest inspiration is Hannah Diamond and AG Cook cause they are the first people that made tracks that I heard with pitched vocals. I’d never heard stuff like theirs before and I thought it was really cute. I’m also inspired by Cloetta Paris, d’Eon, early 2000s girl r&b groups and Chicana West Coast rappers/singers, [like] Ms krazie and Miss Ladypinks.”
“I just sit in a tiny office with a mixer and microphone in my lap, and I use Garageband and start out with some synth stuff. It kind of just goes from there. I’m real excited though, cause I just got a midi controller and Logic. I write lyric ideas on a piece a paper and when i start singing [or] saying the stuff, I usually don’t like it the first time, so I kind of change the words around or use a word and base lyrics off that single word. It’s silly; I have a lot of free time, so I’ll sit at the computer for hours on end to work on a song.”
“My horrible love life is the inspiration for all the songs; my song ‘lemonz’ is about meeting someone who you thought was going to be perfect, but they turned out to be kind of cruddy. my song ‘b-o-y’ is about how I love bad boys cause I love them so much, but it always gets me into trouble [and] heartache. I fall in and out of love real easily; i have so many crushes, but I usually never do anything about it and then when I do it turns out not the way I planned.”
On “Last Breath:”
“I guess I was thinking of a few relationships I’ve had with people when I made that song. I’ve definitely been with someone who was not that great and people tried to tell me—and they were right—but I still felt like I needed to be with that person. I’ve definitely been dissed by someone, but then they still hit me up on the DL, it’s so silly. Plus I was feeling all emotional when I was recording the vocals and I guess that set the tone for the track.”