Witnessing the parade of musicians who drop by to play at the NPR Music offices, it's easy to come to the conclusion that life on the road can be less than enviable. Most come from nearby states in the midst of touring, but Katrine Ottosen passed through four countries in 24 hours en route to NPR. You'd never have guessed it to look at her, though. Ottosen breezed into the office wearing a warm smile and immediately settled in behind Bob Boilen's desk, setting her boots aside and getting comfortable in a pair of slate-gray tights.
A native of Copenhagen, Ottosen performs under the name CALLmeKAT, for which she produces airy, synth-infused pop ribbed with melancholy touches. Brimming with spaciousness and longing, "Going Home" pairs wistful sentiments with a sparse, cheerful melody to haunting effect. It came as no surprise to learn that two of these songs were composed in airports. (She deemed Newark's "so depressing.") In "Glass Walls," Ottosen's elaborate vocal riffs sail over a bare-bones pairing of chords and rhythm, unearthing a delicate tone. In spite of the nostalgia expressed in her songs, Ottosen seems completely at home performing here.
- "Going Home"
- "Glass Walls"
Michael Katzif (cameras); edited by Bob Boilen; audio by Kevin Wait; photo by Erin Schwartz/NPR