The title of Caspar Milquetoast‘s first release, We’ll Have Tea, is taken from a lyric in the final track: we’ll have tea when the rapture comes. Each track on the EP is an attempt to inhabit one particular story (four novels, one novella, a play and a TV show) and speak from the perspective of one of its characters – to sit down for tea with them, if you like.
We’ll Have Tea was recorded between November 2021 and January 2022 (although most of the tracks were written much earlier) and mastered by Tiny Room Records’ label manager Stefan Breuer. The sound of the EP is eclectic, mirroring the different character voices: an exolinguist on an alien planet tells her story to the backdrop of far-out synth arpeggios and acoustic guitar. A jilted Shakespearean mistress curses the man who tossed her aside with a frantic clarinet solo. An understated piano keeps a young man company as he waits for the execution of his lover. And track 5 begins with a remix of Mendelssohn’s wedding march.
Amani began making music around 2017, creating shaky arrangements in GarageBand and recording the vocals in her closet on a hissing USB microphone. Her methods now are much the same, although the microphone is a little better and the closet has become a one-room apartment. Caspar Milquetoast, on the other hand, came into existence in 2022: We’ll Have Tea will be Amani’s first release under that name. Two things define her approach to music: 1) her love of language and 2) her short attention span. This results in a gloriously chaotic songwriting process full of literary references and in-jokes, and generally brief songs with a clear story arc.