CITY MAGAZINE ROCHESTER NY
Sporting a nonchalance and casual cool that champion poker players strive for their whole lives, Brooklyn singer/songwriter Erica Russo is like a breeze on ice. She dresses her tunes up a bit more than most in the idiom. For those who like the stark reality of an artist's wood and wire, you'll find it lurking in between Russo's breaths and the cracks in her melodies."
A cherub with dreadlocks and some burgeoning guitar chops. She finds stunning harmonies all over the fretboard, and has a very original ear for melody.
From poetic flourish to bedrock reality, steadily hypnotic guitar and a wide-eyed sense of place, she nails a feeling.
“Signing Up for This" asks, "Where do you get off?", which sounds like it could both be an accusation or a question about public transportation. The central tension of Brooklyn denizen Erica Russo’s music lies somewhere between those two realms. “The sky has never looked so white before / What the hell am I doing / Stooping to this level?”, she sings, shooting from poetic flourish to bedrock reality, her voice lightly punctuating each line, handing out meaning before tossing each word carelessly out. In turn, every single word stands out in deep focus, briefly and intensely showing itself before winking as quickly out.
This confidence in diction is just one advanced step in an already speedy evolution. Russo’s newest songs, recently debuted live, cherry-pick the best of “Signing Up For This”: a wide-eyed sense of place, steadily hypnotic guitar, the sloughing off of the coffee shop atmosphere, dialing down the soft drums and packing the conversational emotions tighter. Really, her music echoes her lyrics so perfectly, a tense, embattled coming-to-terms can be played out at low volumes; she knows certain all-too-familiar crutches are about to get some serious re-evaluation, and she’s ready. That she then nails a feeling—acceptance, doubt, anger both stupid and transformative—without ever seeming constrained by it is what makes “Signing Up” exceptional. It’s a simple song that more than earns its simplicity—by leaving the listener wanting more. -Chris Molnar
- Rochester Institute of Technology College Radio WITR, Rochester, NY Top 10 most played artist of the month
- Boston University Student Radio WTBU, Boston, MA
- Tufts College Radio WMFO, Boston, MA