Pale Waves brings the noise with its debut album My Mind Makes Noises. The English indie pop band proves that not only does emo have a place in pop, but so does the aesthetic of punk rock. Only your favorite goth gf, Heather Baron-Gracie, could get away with wearing black lipstick while singing about depression and death to the synth-y tune of ‘80s pop. While more than half of the tracks encompass a heavy electronic gloss, the album still maintains a relentless grunge with Baron-Gracie’s ever-present, hauntingly beautiful vocals.
Through murky, yet melodic vocals, the 23-year-old lead singer touches upon various romantic and familial relationships, along with some chancy sexual encounters she has experienced in her life thus far. While the very first track “Eighteen”, and very last track “Karl (I Wonder What It’s Like to Die)” blatantly bring up topics such as experiencing depression and experiencing the loss of a loved one, a number of tracks in between touch upon the singer’s experience with bisexuality, which is a deviation in theme from the band’s prior EP, All the Things I Never Said.
In My Mind Makes Noises, Baron-Gracie is bolder than ever with songs like “Came In Close”, “Red”, and, of course, the included 2017 single “Television Romance”. As the singer stated on Twitter, “Came In Close” and “Red” are about the same person and, well, “Red” …
While “Red” is a bit more reckless and racy with an upbeat tempo inspiring the intoxicating chorus, “Came In Close” is a bit more conservative with a wildly catchy chorus, as Baron-Gracie shows some reluctance towards her lover and inquires about the circumstances she is in with this mysterious figure. As for “Television Romance” …
The singer probably exercises her greatest range of vocals in this particular single. Just as awry as the guitar riffs are in the background is her varied pitch, yet sultry sound throughout the chorus. The way she utters “ooh baby” and “you” quite easily makes this the dark pop (bisexual) ballad we never knew we needed… Well, maybe she and the random girl at the party haven’t got that certain television romance, but if there’s anything that the Brit has got, it’s those impressive high notes, and overall refreshing style, down pat.
Check out the music video for “Television Romance” here:
Last but not least, be sure to check out Pale Waves’ latest music video, “One More Time”, here:
Surprise! The whole “red” theme continues in this video, and the rockstar even changes her lip color for the occasion, because oh, she knows red’s our favorite color!