Landlady Uses Weirdness As A Weapon On 'The World Is A Loud Place'

Audio: Inside Track With Landlady

Landlady

(Photo: courtesy of the artist)

Read about the music of Landlady and you’ll find words like "quizzical" and "vexing." Writers call their singer an "oddball" with a "yowling" voice.

Those words might make Landlady’s music seem difficult or obtuse. Singer Adam Schatz is OK with all that. The Brooklyn musician says there’s one aspect of music he values more than anything.

"If I’m listening to an artist and I really love it, it's usually because I believe them," Schatz says.

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That’s something he kept in mind when he wrote Landlady’s latest album: He wanted his music -- and his singing especially -- to be believable.

He found inspiration in one of the great singers of the last century: Nina Simone.

"She was always herself," he says. "It comes back to believability. You never saw Nina sing or play a single note and not believe she meant every moment of it to be as heavy and strong as possible."  

Schatz listened to a lot of Simone’s music when he wrote the album: So much so that he pays tribute to her on the song “Nina.”

He credits artists like Simone for his evolution as a singer. He says his voice was more restrained on previous Landlady albums. But not on this one.

"My voice has changed," he says. "I’ve gotten stronger and it's also been a bit bigger. Some of that has been admitting that I’m allowed to do that!"

Schatz’s voice is front and center on the album “The World Is A Loud Place.” The vocals serve as the driving force behind songs like “Driving In California.”

His unusual technique and pronunciation help define Landlady’s sound.

"I learned that that was one of the weapons I had to really use," he says. "You can be as weird as you want to be as long as it feels authentic and like yourself. There's plenty of things I’m insecure about but making this music and performing it for people is not one of them."  

However people describe Landlady, Schatz hopes that hearing is believing with “The World Is A Loud Place.”

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