Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Recording engineered by Grant Johnson at Good Danny's, Austin, Texas
Stephanie Macias, or Little Brave, doesn't deal with trifles. She doesn't deal with weakness or vulnerability. It's not that she's galvanized and cannot be harmed, it's more that she's ready to fend off anything that might do so. She's armed. She could even be dangerous. She's threatening, if nothing else. She's ready for the war that might never come. (As I'm writing this, Macias posted a photograph of the new Little Brave stickers that she ordered, which say, "Danger is in my soul." There's nothing like confirmation that you're not completely full of shit and banging out fiction on the old typer, but really getting to something of a point, something that you can hang a hat on.)
Little Brave's music exhibits some form of intensity that you don't hear all over the place. It's strange because it's not really all that intense in the way you might think of intensity in a traditional sense. It's intense because it's so individual. It's so personal and it really seems to be coming from a place that people just don't let other people see all that often. It's emotional. It's naked - sometimes literally. It's calling for blood and it seeks to make people pay for it when they make others hurt, or when they are just plain lousy. She sings, "Let's let them eat their words for dinner/Let's let them eat their words for lunch/Let's let them lie with snakes and dogs/You can only be cordial for so long." Sounds like someone did something more than not return a phone call or use their turn signal when changing lanes. It sounds serious and it's not going to just go away. There's real backbone in these sweetly hissing songs. She sings of the spread of skin and bones and of being held down. She sings about how things have changed - how she's changed and she's not a little girl anymore. She's not naïve and she reinforces that over and over with her words and her cool, curled lip and gaze. She's "aware of all the men stalking their prey" and she's okay with hitting them where it counts, leveling them. Her and all that danger in her soul and lurking in her songs.