LA newcomer Wallice has already stolen some hearts with last year’s debut single “Punching Bag”, but she’s back today with the bigger, bolder and even more addictive follow-up, “23”. It finds her yearning to grow up, as she explains:

“It’s hard not to compare your own professional success to that of your similarly aged peers. I dropped out of university in New York after studying Jazz Voice for a year, and my dad was VERY disappointed to say the least, so it was hard not to feel like a loser in that sense. When I was younger my best friend and I would always talk about the cute apartment we would get after high school, but I found myself at 22 still living with my mom and wanting to move out but not able to quite yet. The specific age 23 doesn’t have any milestones associated with it, but it’s more the idea of just looking forward to the future. Much like how people ‘reset’ every new year, it’s comparable to be ‘older and wiser’ with each birthday, but instead of constantly looking to the future, it is important to be happy with where you are.”

The wisdom she decants in the above quote is hidden in “23”, disguised as sardonic asides and subtly cutting lines. A boisterous pop rock song, it finds her fully embodying the adolescent adult stuck in her childhood bedroom, musing in the verses “expiring at my momma’s house / really thought I’d be out by now / I’m terrified of the future / scared that I’ll still be a loser.” Jumping from the catharsis of that final wailing admission, Wallice launches a blockbuster chorus of loping melodies that make her humdrum ideas into a polychromatic dream of a vibrant future: “Maybe I’ll get married soon / and buy a house with three bedrooms / settle down and get a dog / and make my partner get a job” – the last line there a tip of the cap to her knowing naivety. This is then punctuated by a blast of fuzz guitar, which perfectly underlines the energy and addictiveness of “23”, and ensures it’ll remain lodged in your head for a good while yet.

The song is on streaming platforms now, but you can watch the joyous video for “23”, directed by Taylor Fitzgerald and shot by Taryn Segal, below.

You can find Wallice on Twitter and Instagram.