Anastasia Elliot Embraces Calm over Fear in “Crash Landing”

While the title of Anastasia Elliot’s new single initially comes across as uncomfortably self-explanatory, there is much more to the Nashville, TN musician’s new release than meets the eye, or the ear.

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Premiering today on American Songwriter, “Crash Landing,” is in fact about the very thing it describes. However, Elliot choosing to write a song centered around such a devastating experience was not something she did purely out of desire for psychological shock value or visual bombast, as one might presume before hearing the song or watching the accompanying music video. Rather, to the contrary, this project comes from the pursuit of catharsis and an offer of empathy.

“I came nose to nose with the tarmac when I flew to [New York City] to work on the song. I wanted to create for the listener, a detailed sensory experience of the way that trauma and anxiety felt for me while in the middle of [the emergency,]” Elliot said.

Though the experience itself and the completion of “Crash Landing” is several years behind her now, Elliot is able to bring forth a seriousness and audible sense of gravity to her voice that feels emotionally fragile and collected at the same time. One could say Elliot’s past has also served to enhance this present moment, as her prior training with operatic singing and classical music come through in dramatic nuances like anxiously chromatic strings and Elliot’s own expansive but well-supported voice belting out ends of phrases with a decisive authority that flashes shades of Florence Welch.

More time

We all want more time

To go on when there’s nothing left

But following the light

And then without a warning

I hear the sirens calling

Look up we’re falling from the sky

This performance, on top of lyrics already offering several frank declarations on not just the plane’s malfunction but the rejection of human mortality, speaks to Elliot’s strength in facing difficult memories. It also shows a well rounded sense of creativity on her part, seeing how much cohesion there is between the words, the instrumental arrangement, Elliot’s voice, and the visual design of the music video, which is so reliant on subtle movements and Elliot’s own facial expressiveness to drive home the message of finding inner calm amid chaos and deriving fortitude from that. Everything comes together effortlessly.

“The songwriting and creative process for Crash Landing specifically was a very unique experience,” said Elliot.

“[‘Crash Landing’] quickly evolved in meaning for me when it came to life shortly after I wrote it. The visual then brought the idea and experience to a new and different space and allowed me to explore loss, regret, and in some darkly hopeful way, living life to the fullest with the time that you have left,” she said.

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