Remember music magazines…remember the cover-mount CDs (you probably have plenty stuffed in a cupboard somewhere)? Well Julia Holter, singer, composer and sonic explorer does. She recorded this version of ‘Gold Dust Woman’ way back in 2012 for a Mojo mag tribute to Fleetwood Mac’s soft rock classic ‘Rumours’ album (nerd note- track 11 on the free CD with the January 2013 issue). Julia herself remembers ‘I recorded it at home in 2012 for a Mojo special …. The propulsive dark vibe of this song was appealing and I think the raw energy of my recording captures an exhilarated moment in time for me, in which I was about to start touring, playing my own music for the first time’.
Sands have certainly shifted since then as Holter’s music has steadily sifted its way into our collective imagination. Five albums in, the last three on Domino, and she is now recognised as an artist of deep sensibility and constant invention. Listening to her take on ‘Gold Dust Woman’ from eight years ago, you can hear her magical touch even then. It is the way that Holter stretches the song, gives it air and space while wrapping it in distant regal piano with a subtle electronic pulse. The layered vocals echo eerily, like shoegaze meets the Shangri-La’s, to complete the song’s transformation. It is dream pop defined.
So Julia Holter may be looking back right now with this intriguing release but you just know that it is just part of the process onto another great leap forwards.