Fort Gorgeous Goes "Round and Round" (premiere)

Photo courtesy of Baby Robot Media

Singer-songwriter Fort Gorgeous strips down his indie rock foundation for a folksy take on recent tune, "Round and Round".

Billy Libby is Fort Gorgeous. Though the Portland artist has already released two albums, Libby's The Bottom of the SeaBottom of the Sea EP is the first with which he uses the moniker. It was harvested by his pursuit to develop something more than he already had, removing constraints his real name gave him following the development of his folksier past productions. Fort Gorgeous represents a totally different Libby in regards to his sonic output, somewhere between the worlds of shimmering indie pop and lushly orchestrated rock.

For his stripped down take on "Round and Round", though, Fort Gorgeous adopts a sound closer to Libby's rootsier beginnings. It sets itself apart from his previous work well enough, focusing more on sparse acoustic instrumentation as it is married to one case of persistent, rhythmic synth. It's decidedly far different from the arrangement featured on The Bottom of the Sea, offering a different kind of emotion for listeners to sink into. It's from off of Fort Gorgeous' follow-up EP, appropriately titled Smaller, which is set to release sometime this autumn.

Libby tells PopMatters, "When I was making the EP, The Bottom of the Sea, I was really torn between how I wanted to present these songs. I eventually landed on putting my energy into a full on rock record with dense production, but promised myself I would do a version of the songs that was a little more stripped down and acoustic guitar driven, as that's how the songs were written."

"This song started with an acoustic guitar part that I spent forever crafting. I worked on this version with producer, Sean Morin and engineer Noah Cole. We made this stripped down EP up in Maine over the winter. It was freezing and isolated and I feel like that comes through on the tracks."

"So basically this version of "Round and Round" is about restraint. It's mainly vocals, two acoustic guitars and some additional textures/rhythmic elements all from one small synth. I feel like it's a really satisfying contrast to the version of "Round and Round" on The Bottom of the Sea, which was totally untethered."

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