On new EP ‘twotwentytwo’, indie riser THALA continues to embrace vulnerability, summoning long-buried emotions to colour her ardent love for lyricism amid psych-tinged ‘90s indie rock soundscapes.
Filled with potent songwriting and coming-of-age anthems straight from the heart, these everyday love stories surrender to life’s insecurities. It’s a page from THALA’s diary with impulsive, adolescent brilliance. Evoking the soundscapes of Slowdive, Deerhunter and Mazzy Star alongside the widescreen pop of boygenius and Snail Mail and the subtle punk influences of Juliana Hatfield.
Lead single, ‘I Know When You Care’ is fully charged, burdened by a family being torn apart. Soaring guitars channel the hurt and confusion induced by her parent’s divorce. “I don’t wanna stand here picking sides, cos I’m not sure which one is mine” she reveals, before launching into a chorus that recognises the sadness she observes in each of them. It mourns time lost, whilst simultaneously acknowledging their ensuing, fractured relationship.
‘twotwentytwo’ was recorded in London and Berlin earlier this year and follows the release of ‘In Theory Depression’, THALA’s first EP on Fire Records. Spanning six tracks, it builds on its predecessor’s fearless lyricism, excavating deep-set feelings of loss, pain, desire and conflict against luminous production and addictive melodies. Bill Green’s striking design, first employed on the cover of the last release, melding sepia-tinted photographs with scribbles of youth, evoking bygone days and personal secrets yet to be disclosed.
Blissful guitars and evocative crescendos permeate THALA’s unique vision of dreampop, revelling in soaring choruses and intimate storylines. On its surface, ‘twotwentytwo’ boasts a kind of glorious emotive draw – you’d be forgiven for mistaking any one of these tracks as a backdrop to any teen-angst drama. However, while THALA wants her songs to feel nostalgic, it’s the complexity of her songwriting that sees her modern compositions really resonate and she is keen to stress her lyrics can be interpreted in numerous ways.
“Music is the fuel to heal ourselves in whatever way we need” she says of her relationship with her craft.
And therein lies the heart of this release – a cathartic, wildly empowering, self-explorative from a future indie heartbreaker at her gutsy best.
Showing no signs of slowing down with rammed appearances at this year’s SXSW and The Great Escape, THALA was a featured artist on Rough Trade’s ‘On The Rise’, she also picked up the attention of BBC Radio 1’s Jack Saunders, Nels Hylton and Sian Eleri, KEXP and Kerrang Radio. THALA will be touring the UK and Europe through October and November.
08 Sep: Waves Festival, Vienna, Austria
04 Oct: Don’t Panic, Essen, Germany, w/ Neeve
05 Oct: CBE, Cologne, Germany, w/ Neeve
06 Oct: Nachtleben, Frankfurt, Germany, w/ Neeve
07 Oct: ClubCANN, Stuttgart, Germany, w/ Neeve
29 Oct: Oporto, Leeds, UK
30 Oct: The Hug And Pint, Glasgow, UK
31 Oct: YES (Basement), Manchester, UK
01 Nov: Camden Assembly, London, UK
06 Nov: Cinetol, Amsterdam, Netherlands
07 Nov: LARK, Berlin, Germany
08 Nov: Naumanns, Leipzig, Germany
09 Nov: Chapeau Rouge, Czech Republic, Prague
11 Nov: Gruenspan, Hamburg, Germany
12 Nov: Helios 37, Cologne, Germany
‘twotwentytwo’ is available on LTD Edition Clear Vinyl, out 3rd November