New Music Monday Focus! Focus! 'Concrete'

Focus! Focus! is the solo project of musician Elly Swope, created entirely in her home studio in Portland. The music Focus! Focus! makes is frenetic enough that it’s hard to believe it’s all coming from one person – listening to her latest single, “Concrete,” I imagined Swope as a cartoon Tasmanian devil with instruments, whirling around the studio in a blur of propulsion and crunchy guitar. 

That animalistic energy is no coincidence, says Swope. She describes the song as existing at the “intersection of light and dark… [leaving] us feeling as if the way to get ahead in modern life is to embrace the more primal, selfish parts of oneself and let go of one’s idealism.” This track is the first from Wester Episode 2, Swope’s second album in a trilogy exploring her own coming-out and coming of age between Portland and Los Angeles. “Concrete” is a kickier, more garage-rock sound than Focus! Focus! has made before, but it suits both Swope’s voice and the story she’s trying to tell perfectly. Becoming who you are can get messy, and get loud. 

“Concrete” is available for download here. 

by Katie Presley
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Katie Presley is a writer and editor currently based on the East Coast (help, how did this happen??). She's been with Bitch in one form or another since 2010, when she started as a New Media Intern, and most recently served as Bitch's first and only Music Editor, from 2016-2017. Past resume lines include Assistant Producer for All Songs Considered at NPR Music, panelist on Pop Culture Happy Hour, and bylines at NPR and Ms. Katie is also a doula and herbalist, and writes a blog on herbal medicine, "The Herbal Apprentice." She also co-founded the first full-spectrum doula organization in Texas, The Bridge Collective. She is also a late-comer to being a Dog Person, but currently lives with four cats. 

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