“Comedy” By Sasha Cay
In the back of Montreal artist Sasha Cay’s apartment, there’s a small room with a washing machine and enough space for one chair and her roommate’s rickety easel. It’s where she goes to sit with her guitar and write with the hum of laundry whirling beside her. Her songs often start in that room
What was first sung in hushed tones in a laundry room and recorded in privacy of a basement breathes viciously alive on stage, reflecting the punk scene that Sasha played in as a teenager. The quartet moderate the raucousness of their performance with playfulness—their chemistry and friendship on display as her band makes room for Sasha’s nonchalant vocals and freewheeling guitar. Though these songs may have been written in the aftermath of trauma and loss, they express a true joy on stage—as though the curse can be momentarily suspended and lifted when shared.
Sasha cut her teeth on Montreal’s bars and DIY venues, playing and hosting open mics and performing with local punk and psych rock bands, doubling as a filmmaker, bartering music videos for studio time. In 2017, she emerged with a collection of bedroom recordings — lofi indie songs inspired by the idiosyncratic tunings of Nick Drake and the spontaneity of the Velvet Underground. These short Bandcamp releases as well as her EP Arthur’s Party Trick (released independently in 2020) paved the way towards her forthcoming debut LP.
The aptly titled single, “Comedy”, finds Cay smirking at tragedy, delivering melancholy with grit as she frames humour as a tool for surviving the vertigo of grieving while concussed. The song recounts the absurd timing of the events of a fall in which Sasha was hit by a car while biking and was being looked after by a close friend before they suddenly passed away while she was still recovering.
“I had to stay very still,” she says. “I couldn’t hold a conversation for very long. My head spun. I listened to a lot of records and made a lot of jokes – something I found most comforting about my friend is that she never neglected what the real world feels like; she recognized the humour that hangs just above darkness.”
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