Kitten impresses with dreamlike sound
Something about the song âG#â creates a feeling of uneasiness even as it reels you in. From the first screeching riffs to the beautifully ghostly vocal line, the song launches into a genre difficult to pinpoint.
Thatâs the allure of music made by Kitten, a young quartet unafraid to make multi-layered, emotionally complex tracks. With a sound that combines hazy, dreamlike tones with bona-fide, hard-rock tunes, the bandâs music seems to come at just the right moment. As the music world continues to look for a new direction, Kitten brings its own innovative sound to the table even as it takes from a variety of influences.
Take, for instance, the sound of lead singer Chloe Chaidezâs voice. At 17 years old, the chanteuse serves as the bandleader for songs, matching changes in tempo with otherworldly yelps and swooning, ethereal melodies. Everyone in the band is between 17 and 22 years old, something that makes Kitten especially impressive.
The band met through mutual friends and eventually Chaidez, Lukas Frank, Bryan DeLeon and Waylon Rector joined to create Kitten. After a residency at the Bootleg Bar and the release of its EP Cut it Out, the band is at a very special place.
âWe jelled a lot more as a band and after jelling on the road, we were able to bring a lot of what we learned on the road to the studio and the chemistry blossomed there,â Chaidez said.
Even with her young age, Chaidez has a clear sense of where sheâs going. When sheâs finished with her home-schooling, ChaidezÂ plans to play for Kitten full time, just as the rest of the bandâs members do.
âThis is my life. I want to set my goals high,â Chaidez said. âI know some people think weâre an indie band, but I donât have an indie mindset at all. I want to be playing at the Staples Center.â
Naturally, a complicated sound like Kittenâs makes labelling difficult. And while itâs easy to fall into categories like âhipsterâ and âindie,â for Chaidez the band and its music move past that.
âI donât necessarily mind it, I just donât think Iâm confined to that title,â she said. âI donât necessarily think we make indie music.â
The bandâs sound doesnât echo that of a top-40 hit, but when you listen closely, the themes overlap. Topics such as lost love, city life and money get a twist with Kittenâs poetic lyrics and dreamlike sounds.
The chorus of âG#â makes it easy to sing along, but the lyrics donât prove easy to digest as Chaidez croons, âThrough teardrops and haze / from violence to grace / weâll see you all / weâll see you all again.â
Another song, âChristina,â focuses on a love story made especially poignant by Chaidezâs vocal chops.
âItâs just a nostalgic love story,â she said. âI feel like itâs always romantic when you use a girlâs name in a song. I do that a lot. But the beginning is actually a reference to a New Order song â itâs about a love triangle.â
Yet the emotional subject matter and sometimes lulling songs of the band transform entirely during the live show. Chaidez utilizes the stage like a true showwoman, and the bandâs riffs become even louder.
âItâs a very intense live show,â she said. âI like to do gimmicks like handstands, and I really like to climb on stuff. People wouldnât get that idea immediately out of us live when they hear our music, but itâs a pretty good show, I guess. Not intentionally, but it happens.â
On Facebook, Kitten interacts with fans and keeps them posted on the latest developments, which include attention from the radio station KROQ and upcoming shows. As Kitten continues to grow, Chaidez only becomes more excited about the possibilities.
âThe last night of our Bootleg residency was great because it was over capacity and there was a huge line outside … so people werenât able to get in,â Chaidez said. âIt was such a cool feeling to know all those people are there for you.â
But that doesnât mean that Chaidez is looking for a huge number of fans. Ultimately, a personal connection to listeners means more to the artist.
âMy only goal in what Iâm doing is to be able to touch people and build a fan base I can lean toward,â she said. âIâm perfectly content with touching 100 people every night or just connecting with the fans I have and building new ones that have a connection with me and arenât just like, âOh, I saw your music on a blog today,â but that they are really dedicated to what we are doing.â
For now, the band continues working on the album and touring in the hopes of reaching out to more people. And if their live shows and recording are any indication, they certainly will.
Kitten will play at the Echo on Oct. 25 at 8 p.m. For more information, visit KittenTheBand.com.