LA-based singer-songwriter Naomi Greenwald’s EP, Composite, is aptly named. Less overtly rock than her debut album Darkbloom (2011), Composite offers the music of an artist who has moved beyond the “flush of rock ’n’ roll revelry” (Blurt) to find her true sound. Producer Raymond Richards (Local Natives, Ferraby Lionheart) helped Greenwald traverse several genres—think early 90s indie rock à la The Blackheart Procession meets late Fleetwood Mac with a little pinch of Phil Spector—that have influenced Naomi’s unique songwriting style since she began playing guitar while growing up in northeastern Pennsylvania.
After living in New York for nearly a decade, Greenwald came to Los Angeles in 2007 and this fortuitous move put her in contact with an impressive team of musicians—including Nick Rosen (Jon Brion, Perry Farrell) on bass and Fern Sanchez (Lenka, Pete Yorn) on drums—who are featured on this record and regularly accompany her on stage. For Composite, Greenwald also invited keyboardist Dave Lang and violist (and musical saw player) Morgan Gee into Richards’s studio in order to create a haunting sound that would bolster Greenwald’s dark and evocative songs.
With a voice as comforting as it is raw, Greenwald navigates a variety of compelling moods on Composite with lyrics that have been influenced by both the literature she loves and her own personal experiences. From the moderately paced opener “So We Try,” a lament against the passing of time that Greenwald sings with a notable mix of irony and regret, to the addictively rocky and guitar-heavy “Portraits” and the piano-propelled “James Harris," Composite offers a forceful musical portrait in just five songs.