Kate Teague claims she’s not a poet. “I’m just trying to be as real as possible,” Teague says from Oxford, Mississippi. When you’re making a name for yourself writing and performing songs in William Faulkner’s hometown, it may be a healthy distinction. It’s also not entirely true.
Teague does draw from her own life and from those close to her. She mines lived experience ranging from heartbreak to misread body language to misogyny for honest, concise reflection. At 25, to quote another Southern writer, she’s made of wise blood. It runs through all these songs. “My songs are like journal entries,” Teague says of the six tracks that make up her debut self-titled EP, which was recorded at Memphis’ Delta Sonic by veteran producer Clay Jones. “And I rarely filter myself.” But, tethered to silky melodies, those sharply observed, plainspoken verses belie the daydream cadences, the lush arrangements, and Teague’s clear, graceful voice in ways that do verge on the poetic.