Stream Tei Shi's EP 'Saudade'

We are in love with this Brooklyn-via-Vancouver-via-Bogotá girl.

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Nov 8 2013, 5:00pm

About eight years ago I was talking with a friend of mine about how my favorite kind of music is of the happy-sad variety. You know, the kind of song that's a little melancholic, a little nostalgic, and a lot lovelorn, but tinged with a kind of warm acceptance. Like the musician has taken all their longing and memories and wrapped them in words and melodies for us to snuggle up in that middle distance emotion with them.

For me, the happy-sad spectrum is broad and encompasses everything from The Smashing Pumpkins "1979," to Nico's "These Days," to Beck's take on "Everybody's Gotta Learn Sometimes," to "Head Over Heels" by Tears for Fears, to "Trying Your Luck" by The Strokes.

My friend explained that there was a word for this feeling in Portuguese: "saudade." Or as wiki puts it: "Saudade is the recollection of feelings, experiences, places or events that once brought excitement, pleasure, well-being, which now triggers the senses and makes one live again."

Which is all a lead in to say that rising singer Tei Shi has called her debut EP Saudade (out November 12). A six-song collection—premiering in its entirety below—it tips the scales to the sad side, but is all the more soul-crushingly beautiful for it. Based in Brooklyn (via-Vancover and Bogotá), Tei Shi range is tonally akin to Feist and Lianne La Havas, and what's so goosebump-inducingly awesome about this EP is its range. There's "Nevermind The End" with its Moog rumbles and the vocals delivered from a faraway star, the spiky rounds of "Sicksasfuck," and the delicate acapella layers of love paean "Heart-shaped Birthmark."

Elegant, elegiac, and sensual (check the rhythmic shift at 1.58 on "Nature vs Nurture"), Saudade, is both excellently titled and the best thing we've heard all fall.

"Please fall with me…" she quivers on the choral R&B of "Adder(f)all." Done.



Tei Shi opens for FEMME at the Mercury Lounge on 12/4. Get tickets. Seriously.