Indie pop wunderkind Clairo is back with a new track from her upcoming sophomore studio album, Sling. Along with the release of "Blouse," it was also announced that the project is co-produced by notable producer and singer-songwriter, Jack Antonoff.
Since the release of her critically acclaimed debut album, Immunity, Clairo has been well on her way to becoming a household name. "Blouse" is reaffirmation of that trajectory. A clear sign of this notoriety came hours before the release, when it was revealed that Clairo contributed backing vocals to the comeback single of alt-pop royalty, Lorde.
With one consistent guitar strum throughout, pulling you in with its simplicity, "Blouse" is sonically clean. The lyrics value quality over quantity, and in typical Clairo fashion, are hauntingly delivered by her soft, angelic vocals. The blunt lyricism is almost easy to miss if you're caught up in the serene nature of the track.
"Blouse" contains some of Clairo's most visceral lyrics to date, like "Napkins on laps, the strands pulled back / I hang the scarf and my mom’s anorak." The track has a looming sense of melancholy, which is reflected in the chorus when the all-encompassing meaning of the song is revealed.
When Clairo delivers the titular lyric, "Why do I tell you how I feel? / When you’re just looking down my blouse," in such a delicate demeanor, the weight of what she's singing about hits listeners with force. The song becomes a feeling that all women, and people in general, will recognize. It's a subtle stance on feeling objectified, but one made all the more powerful with its tender, deceiving delivery.
Although the lyrics recount specific details of a situation, "Blouse" also takes a unique approach to addressing general societal issues. In a world that's grappling with it's deeply-rooted faults, artists are expressing pain that has rarely been put into words. The expected response to these faults is anger, which is an emotion that can definitely be found in "Blouse." But, anger towards feeling objectified often manifests into songs about confidence and revenge. What makes "Blouse" unique is that Clairo uses a gentle delivery to enforce such a bold statement.
In terms of artistic trajectory, Clairo's growth is apparent. There's a newfound assurance in "Blouse," especially in it's lyricism. As her deeply personal inner monologue is revealed in the chorus, she even remarks, "It’s something I wouldn’t say out loud." This in itself shows a fresh sense of control and further sparks excitement for what’s to come in Clairo's sophomore album, Sling.
Listen to "Blouse" below: