CLOVES, the Melbourne-originating, London-based pop artist who released her debut album One Big Nothing back in 2018. Today she gives us the first tease of her to-be-announced second record in the form of “Dead”. She says:

Maybe this song should have a back-up name titled ‘Conversations With Myself’. It journeys through anxiety and how that leads to self-deprecating actions. I was in a hard place in myself at the time, and I’m very aware that it sounds cliche but I genuinely found creating this track very cathartic; it not only felt like a way for me to express myself and get the heaviness out of my chest, but it also felt like the beginning of something, an opening foundation of an album, and I think the idea of that creative opportunity was equally helpful to me at the time.”

“I think I hate you now,” CLOVES begins abruptly and uncompromisingly on “Dead”. Whether she’s speaking to an ex or her own unhealthy thoughts – or both – the line is potent, and only becomes even moreso as we venture further into the moody song. The bass is inescapably similar to Gorillaz’ classic “Kids With Guns”, but CLOVES takes us to even darker places on “Dead”, where walls of synths seem to close in on her like unwanted thoughts circling her embattled mind. She’s not giving up yet though, switching between her different registers to show that there’s still plenty of life and fight left in her. “I’m not dead,” she repeats in a zombified-but-determined chant, delivered with such menace that you would never bet against her.

CLOVES has revealed that her new album will revolve around the dystopic synthetic world of her own mind, and while the song “Dead” is a hefty introduction, the video – directed by Daniel Carberry and Carley Cussen – takes us even deeper in.

“Dead” is out today via Interscope. With news about CLOVES’ second album surely just around the corner, you’ll want to follow her on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.