Phoebe Bridgers has returned to show a more intricate side of herself with her new 4 song EP, Copycat Killer.
Released on Friday, November 20, 2020 via Dead Oceans, the surprising EP features reworked versions of some of her most sincere tracks from her 2020 sophomore album, Punisher. Briefly looking back for a moment, Bridgers stormed onto the scene in 2017. Since then she has made waves and worked with countless artists from Conor Oberst of Bright Eyes to her newest Collaborator and Arranger Rob Moore; who has working with tons of artists from Haim to Bon Iver, and Paul Simon.
The perfect addition to her growing discography, it starts with “Kyoto,” a single from Punisher. This time twisted with soaring orchestration, there are strings flying over hills and valleys that are almost cinematic with a dramatic flare. Ranging in different string styles from tremolos, or quick bowing, to tranquil phrasing, creating a beautiful story in its wake, Bridgers seems to pour even more of her heart into this version.
The following revisited track, “Savior Complex,” in comparison to its original version, seems to play to a different extreme; catering to more volume and bounding ebbs and flows of chaos. It contrasts between the ever delicate nature of belonging and dissonant disarray of inner denial. From here, Bridgers continues to push the boundaries of how her songs can be retooled and retranslated to the masses. This is the case with “Chinese Satellite” which claims similarity to its predecessor, yet stylistically is different The strumming on the upper and lower strings of the orchestral instruments are heavily clever and it suddenly spans into an ever evolving melodic dreamy melody. This back and forth of ideas intertwines the EP to her full-titled Punisher in an almost evolutionary way. Finally, “Punisher” closes the EP with vivid, intricate string detail. With glimmers of emotion, the instrumentation attached plays as like a picturesque teaser to the epoch that it pays tribute.
The title Copycat Killer and its origin is subtly noted in the lyrics of “Punisher” and it truly pays to a solid fact; this EP is a slight copy of its predecessor and these reimagined covers are killer pieces within themselves. That in mind, Phoebe Bridgers continues to innovate and grow as an artist. Creating more layers to peel off, she is revealing more of her true, vulnerable self with each piece of new music she puts out. That is why Cryptic Rock gives Copycat Killer 5 out of 5 Stars.