Maria BC

Deep, dark textures from Oakland singer


Born in Ohio, Maria BC is now a resident of San Francisco’s Bay Area and first appeared on the experimental pop scene in 2021. Weaving ambient and folk-infused soundscapes, they tap a similar vein to the likes of Grouper, Lisa Germano and MJ Guider, layering tracks with distorted electric guitars, ethereal vocal meditations, and acoustic fingerpicking to stunning effect.

Why Maria BC?

Maria BC’s deft balancing of different elements is something only a skilled artist is capable of, so it comes as no surprise they had classical training as a mezzo-soprano. Their finely delivered vocals drift in and out of focus with aplomb, while the compositional aspect of their songs often lean toward the non-linear. In fact, they sometimes abandon the idea of lyrics altogether, preferring to access what they describe as “a kind of preverbal state”. It’s part of what makes Maria BC’s music so haunting, ideal for night drives or summoning dreamlike states, or perhaps watching the ferries at dusk,  if you’re also a Bay Area local.

Tell Us More…

Their second full-length album, ‘Spike Field’, came out last month on Brooklyn label Sacred Bones. Wondering what “spike field” means? In the 1990s, a team of anthropologists, linguists and archaeologists began researching how they might create a form of communication which could be understood by future civilisations. The researchers came up with the “spike field” – a strange, conceptual design made of “granite thorns, bursting from the earth” that might warn viewers of the presence of uninhabitable nuclear waste disposal sites. And that gloomy image is something Maria wanted to reflect in their debut album. “I had a very strong tendency to want to destroy any previous version of me,” they confess. “I wanted to erase the memories of anyone who knew me more than a year ago. It’s the effect of shame.”

‘Spike Field’ is out on Sacred Bones

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