Ember Schrag is a musician from western Nebraska, a singer and guitarist hailed as "distinctive and free of affect or artifice" (A.V. Club). Her lyrics lace profound declarations–visceral/sincere but enigmatic–into plots from tragic folktales, classic literature, nightmares and revelations from the collective consciousness. The actual events are omitted from retellings: she'd rather speak in bittersweet details. Super-8 stills and off-topic epiphanies. Flora and fauna. Psychedelic polaroids from a bizarre true-believer childhood, looming before the stark and lonely backdrop of the Great Plains. She writes about what happens behind closed doors, what misled people do when left to their own devices. This warm and inviting voice can find hope and solace in revisiting a vision, a dream, even as she reads aloud unsettling passages from the Old Testament she has superimposed over a modern Jesus-Kamp Midwest. She confronts the con-men, soothsayers, and dime store prophets of her youth. Drenched with fire, consumed by water, here is an ocean of stars, a desert covered in rows of corn. The flashback is blindingly bright.
Schrag also performs improvised electroacoustic music in the project Office Park (upcoming album on Humbug out of Norway), a collaboration with instrument builder Bryan Day. She currently resides in Iowa.