The internet’s rubbish these days.
Social media has now become boiled down to a mere two concepts: people with something to sell, and everyone else. The first lot are becoming so distractingly annoying in their pursuit of the latter’s cash that most of them forget to even say “hello!” occasionally, making the likes of Facebook and Twitter (and Ello if they promise to stop emailing me) a means of soul-free (and expenditure-free) craven advertising. Not sure why I sound surprised at that.
Citizen Helene is the exception to that rule, unless she’s selling a whole bunch of Mick Ronson/Todd Rundgren ephemera that I’m not currently aware of. An artist who performs with Papernut Cambridge and Mary Epworth, Helene finally gets round to following up her sorrow-tinged folky Beach Boys beauty of her début EP with this single, and it’s quite a surprise. The title track retains that sense of melancholia, but it’s all gone a bit gloriously disco. I’m reminded a little bit of the Martina Topley-Bird/Warpaint/Mark Lanegan thing of a short while back (particularly during the fitting extended remix) with its killer bassline and no-nonsense floor-filling fun. On top of all this is Helene’s voice, velvet-soft and dreamlike; just adept at this sort of thing as she was when she was doing the other thing five years ago.
In between those, there is (there are?) ‘Bridges’, a Parisian swish that fits with today’s weather that shows off her talent for melody and harmony, almost totally at odds with the glitterball goings-on which makes me wonder in which direction she’s probably going to be heading next. It’s no matter though, as everything here is full of the personality and cheerfulness that makes her twitter feed such a silly joy to be a part of.
The single is out via WIAIWYA on 7/7, the 7″ is limited to 77 copies (just noticed a bit of a motíf going on there) complete with artwork by top-notch artist Pete Fowler, and digital copies are available for people with more reliable computers than my own.