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Mali Returns From A 'Break' With A Tone Change

Nov 23, 05:22pm

Her new single ‘Ashes’ just dropped, and it’s a good ol’ pop anthem

Indie artist Mali’s last album 'Caution To The Wind' came out last year. It was a collection of tight, short-form music that experimented with synths and some solid sonic choices to compliment what has become her MO over the years, which is simple but earnest pop. She’s leant far more into that pop mentality on her first release since then, which is a song called ‘Ashes’. That song incorporates a much more stripped down, piano/guitar-backed writing style, which comes much closer to what she does on her solo live gigs. It’s a sound that’s making something of a comeback in the singer-songwriter space all over the place (thanks, Phoebe Bridgers) and it fits her vibe, so yes, the song is quality; chords, hooks and all the fixin’s. But there is context to it, so we asked her what she’s been up to for the last many months.

 

How did you connect with music during your break from releasing it?

I started becoming more aware of all the things that made me excited about music and songwriting in the first place. That said, I didn’t take a proper break from music. Just the recording and releasing aspect of it. Since I’ve been a one woman team all along I started to get to a place of burnout and just needed to take some time out for myself to connect with my craft.

 

How was the reception to your album? It came out while the pandemic was still going; how did you showcase it live?

The response to the album has been excellent. Everyone seems to have their own favourites from the collection of songs on it, which is exactly what I’d hope for. Since the pandemic I’ve been playing more solo gigs and so we haven’t yet played a full and gig since the launch. We are, however, in the process of planning a proper band tour early next year with Lollapalooza in the mix. You have no idea how excited I am to play these songs live with the boys!

 

You seem to be taking a bit of a stylistic turn with this new single... What have you been listening to of late?

At the top of my current playlist is Lizzie McAlpine, Dora Jar and Weyes Blood. Very bold female songwriter fronted pop music. I think it does reflect in the way I’ve treated this release. Its more stark and artist-centric than the previous ones.

 

Are there any longer releases in the works to expect soon?

Since I just spent a good chunk of time and effort on the album, I’m going to stick to singles for a bit before the next EP or album.

 

The festival season is back after Covid; how excited are you about it and what's a nice festival memory you have?

The second half of 2022 has been unprecedentedly busy for me and my friends in the industry. Everyone seems to be either rehearsing, traveling or on stage which makes me feel all fuzzy inside because we have all held out through the tough times just for this moment. My best festival memories have been meeting and spending time with other artists and friends backstage after the gigs. We’d all be in various stages of coming down from our adrenaline high and there was a sense that we are all in it together. I missed that and I’m excited to say I’m feeling it happen all over again.

 

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