Following last year’s Crushing, we’ve been on tenterhooks for anything new from Australian great Julia Jacklin, and today out of the blue she has returned with two new songs. They are released as part of Sub Pop’s Singles Club, and will be released as a 7″ with “to Perth, before the border closes” on the A-side, and “CRY” on the b-side. Of the A-side, Jacklin says:
“I’ve moved around a lot the last 5 years; chasing things, love, work, something new, whatever and there’s always this fear that I’m leaving good things behind just to go somewhere else and be lonely. Whispering “everything changes” to myself helps get me to sleep at night. I started writing this song in Melbourne and finished it in Perth. It was like a little song bridge between the two cities to make the change easier.”
Jacklin has become a master of tangling up anger and emotional susceptibility into quietly simmering tracks, and on “to Perth” she does it once again. She starts calmly enough, her light-as-a-feather voice drifting over light breezes of guitar, but as she repeats the phrase “everything changes”, “to Perth” starts to pick up some energy. From there, her fraught mindset is more on display, and coming ever more into focus, until we reach the rousing chorus of that simple phrase again “everything changes – everything is changing,” sung with equal parts fear and hope. It’s an acute and tidy summation of what 2020 has been – and continues to be.
“CRY” is a more straightforwardly emotional track, as is probably made obvious by its simple title. Nevertheless, the swaying guitars and layers of wordless harmonies ensure that this one is another heartbreaker, especially as she describes “hiding my emotions from the house maids”, and continues to unfold a rich little tale of confused feelings.