Review: Keeper E.'s new album is airy, effortless bedroom pop

The Halifax singer-songwriter's new album is for fans of Sky Ferreira, Stars and Billie Eilish.

Keeper E. follows up her 2021 debut with a new EP, out now.
Thank U and Please Don’t Go, the sophomore album by Halifax songbird Keeper E., is music equally suited to waiting and to ruminating: Soft, shoegaze-y bedroom pop rendered mid-fidelity, the songs bend between morose and hopeful, between danceable and downbeat—sometimes as often as in a single line. After nabbing New Artist Recording of the Year at the 2021 Nova Scotia Music Week awards for her debut, The Sparrows All Find Food, Keeper E. (née Adelle Elwood) is back with a new album, yes—but she still wants the focus to be on her soaring vocals.

This time around, though, there’s an audible confidence to her DIY production, making weirder and richer soundscapes that combine with her lean, confessional songwriting to build an EP that brings the likes of Sky Ferreira and Stars to mind. As the seven tracks unfold, Elwood’s lyrics keep aloofness and emotional intimacy in a strong-armed tango, twisting the listener around a Billie Elish-tiled dance floor. It’s swirling and addictive, a blueprint built by Robyn and dialled down by Elwood from disco to dreamscape, with winning results.
Sometimes, her vocals fly so high the sparseness becomes thin air: She doesn’t belt or bellow, but rather relies on a Feist-esque, breathy highness. But, on these rare moments, oxygen soon floods in thanks to a pedal loop, drum track or trance-dance breakdown.

"You make it seem so much harder than it is/I can do it, I can do it,/Get my name off your lips" Elwood sings on the hook of the Tegan and Sara-sounding "I Can Do It". An effusive effortless across Thank U and Please Don't Go shows that she can, indeed—all the while making indie pop look easy.