If there’s any justice in the world, as iconic British noughties pop juggernaut Lemar once said, Alex Winston – the Michigan-born indie pop purveyor earning rave reviews and comparison to Kate Bush just about here, there and everywhere (which slightly left-field female vocalist isn’t compared to Kate Bush, though? I mean, come on, at least try to hide your lazy sexism) – is about to make some major waves in the pop stratosphere.
Why, I hear you ask, oh graceful wanderer of the world of wordpress? Because of this banging little ditty called ‘Velvet Elvis’, oh graceful wanderer. On surface level at least, this is seemingly nothing more than a very agreeable and very enjoyable slice of whimsy-laden indie pop fare that’s got that elusive sugary vocal effervescence nailed down to a tee. Beneath Winston’s strangely transfixing, high-octave voice, there’s something more, though. After a second listen, this became a, er, classic case of love at second sight. Simmering beneath her fulgent falsetto, a gloriously venomous majesty rears its head, and with it, both her and her genre’s true subversive brilliance. “Kill the bitch that bats an eye,” Winston bites in the bridge, as natural as a lioness defending her cubs, only Alex is defending an inanimate velvet portrait of the deceased King of rock n’ roll, which/who she also appears to be sleeping with, as she mentions she(/they?) was(/were?) “caught in our special time.” So, to avoid getting into semantics, the morale of the story is: don’t be deceived by the glossy veneer or the shimmering soundscapes of pop simplicity. Pop makes the world go round. Don’t dismiss it. Don’t be a music purist. Oasis aren’t that good. Always go the extra mile. And you will be rewarded intensely, as you stand, probably by my side, pleading that all future pop songs be replete with neurotic and paraphiliac tendencies. Anyway, to conclude and to misquote Stuart Murdoch, you should probably colour your pop with the chaos of ALEX WINSTON now because saying anything else would be superfluous, if it wasn’t already.