We’re nearing the end of our publishing year – here are some tunes to tie you over in our imminent absence
Single of the week: “Cherry Pit” by Luna Li – 4.5/5
Toronto-based musician Luna Li released “Cherry Pit,” a dreamy single about how good things don’t last forever. She invites the listener to appreciate the present moment.
In an interview with Paper, she said she started writing the song after she found out that the cottage her family holidayed at would be going up for sale. She asked her family to write about a hike they had all gone on together and from their haikus came the eventual lyrics for this song, making for a moving, meaningful track.
The single showcases Li’s multi-instrumental talent, progressively layering harp, guitar, and keyboard harmoniously to create an instrumental landscape. Influenced by her classical training, she incorporates sweeping instrumental interludes to this single, while her vocals bring an effortless warmth, creating a track fitting for brighter days to come.
Album of the week: Before I Speak by Lucy Park – 4/5
Before I Speak is the London/Los Angeles-based artist Lucy Park’s debut EP. On this R&B influenced collection, Park sings about the start and the end of a relationship.
The EP opens with the slow-tempo “Cold.” In this track, Park sings about the cold guardedness she feels from the person she is interested in. The instrumentals in the song gradually build up to the more up-tempo songs of the middle of the EP.
Before I Speak picks up with the second and third tracks, “True to You” and “On God.” In these songs, Park takes on a warmer, more confident tone. Then, the album winds down with the last two songs of the EP, “Somebody Else” and “After All,” which recount the end of the relationship.
Her vocals and the lyrics are the strongest part of the EP, and the musical arrangement highlights this. The simple instrumentals compliment her warm, soft vocals, while the lyrics explore the melancholy of lost love.
New to us: spill tab
The Los Angeles-based, French-Korean artist spill tab released her first single “Decompose” in 2019, where she established the dreamy pop sound that she’s built on in subsequent singles and albums. In the track “Decompose,” spill tab, sings of the dysfunction of a traditional family and the rotting of a couple.
Last December, spill tab released her debut EP, Oatmilk. On it, she sings in both English and French, with each song taking on a distinct tone. Her songs in English tend to be more vulnerable, while the songs in French take on a bolder tone.
In “Cotton candy,” she opens on her vulnerabilities and insecurities of the beginning of a relationship. The song begins with her vocals backed by the ukulele, but progressively adds in instrumentals to create a dreamier, more distorted sound. “Calvaire,” on the other hand, is one of the songs she sings in French about the frustration and annoyance she feels towards a relationship she invested in. This one takes on a more upbeat tempo while featuring lighter vocals.
Her newest single, “PISTOLWHIP,” was released earlier this month and while “Cotton candy” takes on a lighter, dreamy sound, this song departs from that, adopting a grittier, bass-driven sound. The lyrics of the song are about the unpredicted ending of a relationship, along with the hurt and anger that come with it.