Slated for a September 9th release on Julian Casablancas’ Cult label, Crush Songs is Karen O’s first official solo record, and today, the question of how much Karen O’s solo material could diverge from her work with Yeah Yeah Yeahs may have been answered with Rapt, a stripped-down, succinct track about precisely what her album title promises.
Directed by the singer’s husband Barney Clay, the video for Rapt finds her drifting inside a bed of water, enveloped by her love, asking herself “Do I need another habit like you?” and drowning. The economical nature of both song and video makes it all the more evocative. The love is fleeting, and so is its pain of drowning.
“When I was 27, I crushed a lot,” Karen O explains on her website. “I wasn’t sure I’d ever fall in love again. These songs were recorded in private around this time. They are the soundtrack to what was an ever continuing love crusade.”
This isn’t the first time Karen O has set out on a musical journey of her own either. Earlier this year, she was nominated for an Academy Award for The Moon Song, the unforgettable tune that rightly captured the spirit of Spike Jonze’s Her.
Though Crush Songs is her first official solo record, in 2006, an unofficial solo record by Karen O titled KO at Home, supposedly a gift to Dave Sitek of TV on the Radio, leaked online. Like most of Karen O’s solo work in terms of quality and intimacy, KO at Home warrants listening, and you can listen to it below.