Connor Small is behind this musical production titled “Husks”. Connor creates music by fusing experimental pop and icy electronic atmospheres of contemporary horror movie scores with booming trip-hop grooves much like Fever Ray and Zola Jesus. From an early age, Small showed a interest and love for music and learned how to play several instruments before graduating high school. He would begin writing his own songs and play in bands even before entering college. After college, Connor formed the electro soul group "Youth Culture" with former classmates and had an EP debut released in 2016. Taking influence from horror movie sounds and from "Youth Culture", Connor created his most recent EP “Design Me”.
"If I Had A Heart" is rather ambient and as the listener we get the vibe of mysteriousness and ambiguity. It is almost eerie with the single plucks of guitars and unique effects that are layered on. His vocals are very timid but have a timbre that makes us on the edge of our seat as we listen. The layers of different textures add to the horror movie/pop effect. It makes us comfortable and familiar but yet we are surprised by the eeriness of it all. Small makes a haunting ambient melody full of flavor and texture. Make sure to check out "If I Had A Heart" here.
We had the chance to ask Husks more about his music and what's coming next!
Care to introduce yourself to our readers? Can you give us a brief history of your musical career?
Sure! My name is Husks and I’m a producer & singer from Brooklyn. I’ve been producing since I was about 16 - I started writing instrumentals in my bedroom during high school and got into electronic recording during college. I spent way too much time holed up in my dorm room or the studio we had in the basement of the music building, and used to skip class all the time to just keep working on a new track or idea. Eventually, I just decided I should do music full time.
Since then, I’ve moved to New York and have been writing and producing for myself and some local acts. I was in an electro-pop duo called Youth Culture for a while - we put an album out in 2016 and played a ton in New York. But I was being drawn to darker sounds and ideas which didn’t fit that group, and eventually I came up with the idea for Husks and branched out on my own.
How did you come up with your name? Is there a meaning behind it?
Yeah, so I’m actually kind of a horror movie nerd. I would binge watch them constantly and as I was coming up with my new, darker sound I wanted to emulate the scores from these movies. So I decided I wanted a name to reflect that, and Husks just kind of came to me. It gave me a character to play. A husk is almost like a zombie; this kind of empty shell of a person that walks around aimlessly. Since my music is melancholy, and deals a lot with inwardness, mental health struggles, and broken relationships I felt this fit perfectly. I get to write through that character of Husks, which lets me get really creative in coming up with stories and themes.
Do you write your own music? Can you tell us a bit about your writing style?
I do, but I also co-write a lot of music with my friend Becca Krueger. She’s insanely talented and co-wrote my whole EP with me. She’s kind of my second-layer-of-revision because I come up with some crazy instrumental ideas, and she helps me “popify” them so they’re a little more accessible and melodic.
My writing style is definitely focused on blending cinematic themes with electronic textures, industrial drums, and guitars. I usually start out with a central sound and mess with it on a loop until I come up with something workable, and once I have that I mute everything but the drums. If listening to the drums alone don’t get you tapping your foot or moving then to me, the track can’t succeed. Melodically, I like to keep things simple and straightforward. I find the best hooks come from the simplest of melodies.
We’re really into your new song! Can you tell us a bit about it? Where did the inspiration behind the song come from?
Thank you! It’s called “If I Had A Heart” and it’s a companion piece to my other single “Design Me.” In that song I’m singing about being in the type of relationship where your partner is only accepting of the parts of you they find appealing, but not the whole person. They’re “designing” a partner instead of embracing them in their entirety. “If I Had A Heart,” is from their perspective. I’m singing about the desire to be accepting, but having an inability to love openly and freely. It’s about only being able to love cautiously and being guarded, and how sometimes that can hurt just as much as unrequited love.
What’s next for you?
Well, I have a few projects in the works. I’m currently working on a follow up to my EP - hopefully a full length LP - that I’ll be releasing next year. It’s a little heavier in both sound and lyrical themes so I’m excited to put it out. I’ve also been producing for other artists - I did a track for an artist named Quelle Rox, I have another dropping soon with Lotushalves, and I’ve done some composing for short films. I really would love to compose a feature film at some point, it would be pretty cool if this all came full circle and I could compose a horror movie!
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