Music by VICE

Hear Caitlin Canty's Gritty Alt-Folk 'Motel Bouquet' Before Everyone Else

Canty, the Vermont-born singer-songwriter, moved to Nashville but refuses to let that change her. At least, as much as she can.

by Annalise Domenighini
Mar 26 2018, 5:00pm

David McClister

It's around 8 PM in New York when I call Caitlin Canty on the phone. She's in Portland, Oregon, for a couple of shows before wrapping up what she calls her "cherry-picking" tour for Motel Bouquet, her upcoming album that Noisey is premiering today. "It's a pre-release release tour" she laughs, for the soft release of the album whose release date was delayed because there are still some parts of the world (like indie releases) that SXSW gets in the way of.

Motel Bouquet—not "Motel Boutique," or "Hotel Boutique," which according to Canty are very real names people have called this album—is the singer/songwriter's third full-length release and first since moving to Nashville in 2015. Eager to get out of NYC, where she had spend the previous 10 years of her life, Canty headed west after the release of Reckless Skyline in 2015. Though determined not to let her new home in a city known for glitzing up even the folkiest of artists, she admits life in Tennessee has changed her a bit. "Once you're accustomed to your home and the weather, you know when it's about to rain. Moving down to Tennessee, I was standing next to a guy who said 'this [storm] is gonna be a bad one because it's coming from that direction.' I'm so new here, I don't have that natural intelligence anymore, I have to earn it."

"Scattershot" in particular is the song on this album that really hones in on the effects weather can have on a person. Where most of her songs maintain a minimalist approach to sound, this diverges from that, beginning with airy, peaceful guitars and backing violin and near-monotone vocals that build, with help of a constant warning of a drumbeat, into a thunderous array before going out just as quietly as it came it. "Climate change has always been a huge part of my understanding of how the world changing," says Canty, who previously worked for an environmental group and who grew up the daughter of maple syrup farmers. "The severity of storms and intensity, is something that both attracts me and frightens me."

Motel Bouquet is out on March 29, but you can hear it first below and pre-order it here.

Caitlin Canty Tour Dates
Apr 25 – Cambridge, MA – Club Passim
Apr 26 – New York, NY – Rockwood Music Hall Stage 2
Apr 27 – Northampton, MA – The Parlor Room
Apr 28 – West Rutland, VT – West Rutland Town Hall Theater
May 01 – Portland, ME – One Longfellow Square
May 04 – Pittsburgh, PA – Carnegie Lecture Hall #
May 06 – Newark, OH – Thirty One West Ballroom #
May 09 – Nashville, TN – The Station Inn
May 12 – Troy, NY – Troy Savings Bank Music Hall #
May 13 – Portsmouth, NH – The Music Hall #
May 17 – Fort Wayne, IN – The B-Side at One Lucky Guitar
May 18 – Oconomowoc, WI – Three Brothers Farm
May 19 – Oconomowoc, WI – Three Brothers Farm
May 20 – Minneapolis, MN – 7th St Entry
May 22 – Madison, WI – Ruby
May 23 – Evanston, IL – SPACE
May 24 – Ann Arbor, MI – The Ark
May 25 – Pittsburgh, PA – Club Café
May 26 – Peninsula, OH – G.A.R. Hall
Jun 22 – Bozeman, MT – Acoustic Life Festival

# w/ Josh Ritter

[Editor's note] A previous version of this story stated that Motel Boutique was Canty's seventh album. It is her third. We apologize for the error.