Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part of our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Each and every Friday, we deliver songs by local artists. Today’s selection, featured on the Midday Show with Cheryl Waters, is “Intuition” by LoneLady from her 2010 album Nerve Up on Warp Records.
Julie Campbell, originally from Manchester, drew attention in the music industry since her appearance in the 2006 edition of SXSW. Known as LoneLady, Campbell started her career after graduating in Fine Arts and pursued a solo project after her discontentment towards being part of a band (via BBC).
Nerve Up is the title of her debut album, released in February of this year, and while it’s considered to be part of the pop genre — as LoneLady categorizes herself on her Myspace page — there is a strong reference to the late 70’s, early 80’s punk-rock streaming, and a big influence from Joy Division, New Order, Pylon and Au Pairs when it comes to sound delivering, as heard already in the first single, “Immaterial.” On the other hand, Campbell does share a similarity vocally with Madonna, and the fashion of Ana Torroja back in the days when Mecano had just conquered Spain, Italy, France and Latin America.
“Intuition” is a very good example of this mix of 80’s rock and pop with LoneLady’s particular way of modernizing with styles of indie rock and post-punk. However, while she keeps the music distinctive and her voice noticeable, there is a thematic sense of distance. Perhaps there isn’t exactly a story to relate, but the song refers to actions that took place in the past and consequences for the future as LoneLady sings the lines like “Future I saw […]”, “senseless to retaliate” and “Disturbs my vision”. Not only the singing, but the lyrics are a time machine to this Eighties New Wave and Pop mode. Nerve Up is definitely a post-punk revival in this era of new sounds, but where many band rely exclusively on mixers and synthesizers to bring back this genre explosion that took place just a couple of decades ago, LoneLady also adds guitar and her voice to create her own trademark.
LoneLady is currently touring in the United Kingdom, with no dates set for the United States. You can keep up through her MySpace page, just in case Campbell decides to head Stateside. For now, check out this live version of today’s song, filmed for the “LA Sessions” from Libération, the French daily newspaper’s website: