Who the hell is Bryan Lee O'Malley? Well, have you ever heard of Scott Pilgrim vs. The World? Yeah, he wrote those. He is also a one-man lo-fi musical project called Kupek. O'Malley makes music with Kupek whenever he's feeling low, or unwanted, or dejected, or...well, human. With a first record released in 2002, he's gone on to write five or six albums (depending on whether you count a split with Faux Photos as an album or not). And while it seems that Kupek may be on a brief pause between releases, with the most recent having been put out in 2009, I have a feeling that Kupek isn't necessarily gone. Bryan Lee O'Malley is Kupek, and Kupek is O'Malley. He pours a lot of feeling into the records, and you can tell that despite the mediocrity of audio quality, there's a lot of love that's gone into refining and polishing these records.
The musical style of Kupek is mostly acoustic. As time has progressed, though, so has the musical experimentation that's gone into Kupek. In more recent releases, there has been experimentation with synthesizer, hip-hop beats, and electric guitar, but O'Malley's voice always remains the human constant, providing a reachable and tangible connection with the listener. From songs about breakups to covers of songs about sinking ships, from headless horsemen to laying in bed with cats, O'Malley never fails to reach a certain part of us that we're never really sure is there ourselves, until it's displayed for us, plain to see, in a simple and lyrical fashion. Kupek makes me feel good, as if I should. And I do today, celebrating my life with humanizing music feels appropriate.
You can pick all of Kupek's music up for free (don't worry, it's legal!) on O'Malley's very own site.