If there’s any justice in the world, as British pop juggernaut Lemar once pondered, Alex Winston, the Michigan-born indie pop purveyor recently compared to Kate Bush (which female vocalist isn’t compared to Kate Bush though? I mean, come on), is about to make some major waves in the pop stratosphere.
Why, I hear you ask, oh graceful wanderer of the world of wordpress who has wandered over to this foreign land of cosmic ambience? Because of this pretty little ditty called ‘Velvet Elvis’, that is why. We – the song and I – shared something of an affable, diplomatic relationship at first, my first impressions not amounting to much more than that of subdued enjoyment for this slice of whimsy-laden, pleasant enough indie pop fare that got that elusive sugary vocal effervescence nailed down to a tee but didn’t seem to be doing much beneath Winston’s strangely transfixing, high-octave voice. I thought it very listenable, before moving on to the next, as you do. But then the magic happened, and after a second listen, with it bringing closer attention to the lyrics, it became a classic case of love at second sight: lurking beneath the surface, a gloriously venomous majesty reared its head. “Kill the bitch that bats an eye,” the petite songstress hisses in the bridge, as natural as a lioness defending her cubs, only Alex is defending an inanimate velvet portrait of the deceased King, which she also appears to be sleeping with, as she mentions she(/they?) was(/were?) “caught in our special time.” Clearly, the morale of this story if there is one, is not to be deceived by the shimmering soundscapes and glossy veneer of pop simplicity. And on that note, I have nothing else to add other than my request that all future pop songs be embedded with neurotic and paraphiliac tendencies. So, to misquote Stuart Murdoch, you should probably go ahead and colour your pop with the chaos of ALEX WINSTON now because saying anything else would be superfluous.