Là˜Là˜ Embraces Heartbreak and Pop-Punk on 'overkill'
Photo: Ellie Beers Fallon
Toronto musician Là˜Là˜ has just released her six-track EP overkill, and it is EVERYTHING. Self-described as “brutally honest and a little unhinged,” Là˜Là˜ doesn’t shy away from expressing what’s on her mind. The record recounts the journey she's experienced over the last few years into an emotional beacon for anyone who’s struggled to keep it all together.
“Take the regular highs and lows of being young and dumb, add in a global pandemic and a heavy dose of social anxiety, and you get a seriously unstable Là˜Là˜,” she confesses. “Armed with what seemed like an endless well of inspiration, including killing many plants and relationships, falling for people I shouldn’t, etc., I felt lost, lonely, and pathetic. When I feel that way, I turn to music - somehow, songwriting has become the only type of surgery that can fix me when I’m broken. So instead of dealing with these things like a normal person, I wrote an EP. All I can do now is cross my fingers and hope people understand the twisted pile of wreckage that is my brain."
overkill opens with "death wish,” an unconventional take on your standard love song. “Those three little words might as well be R.I.P, ugh!” she playfully sings. Là˜Là˜ has a flair for self-deprecating, and “death wish” has a muscular, stadium-sized hook about the despairing inevitable. “I don’t know how or when, but I know it’s gonna have a tragic end,” sings the artist.
The record transitions seamlessly into “lonely & pathetic,” the first track the singer wrote for the record. “I wrote the entirety of this EP in Toronto after months and months of lockdown,” she shares. "Isolation can trap your mind in its darkest recesses, letting the negative voices become louder and overpowering." Là˜Là˜ holds up a mirror up to those voices, and says fuck it. “I’m a dumb bitch, and I blew it, and I don’t even gotta wonder why,” she quips over the livewire chorus.
On the EP’s focus single, “hurt less,” Là˜Là˜’s well-versed in the macabre and makes her pain from a relationship gone wrong a visceral tour de force. “Fuck with my mind like it’s your job, manipulating me until my heart stops,” she sings over thrashing guitars. There’s rage and agony here, but in the expression of it, ultimately catharsis. The accompanying music video sees Là˜Là˜ on the couch turning into various shows where she’s the star - the weather channel, a cooking show, a magic show, etc. - until something goes wrong, and all she can do is look on. It captures the out-of-body feeling of only being a spectator in life.
Fueled with angst, Là˜Là˜ gives her ex a piece of her mind on “u look stupid.” The song motivates listeners to stand up for themselves with its pummeling, grunge-evoking guitar riffs that go hard and do not relent. “When I first wrote ‘u look stupid,’ I was in a place where I had been writing a lot of sad songs about my most recent heartbreak," says the singer. "I finally got to a point where I was simply done being sad about it and was ready to start saying, 'fuck u.’” The “take no shit” energy seeps through the short song and inspires listeners to take back their power from people who have wasted their time and energy.
On “die without u,” Là˜Là˜ swings between anguish and infatuation, describing this push-pull feeling she feels towards her love, buffeted by the track’s understated verses and brash, euphoric choruses. It’s delightfully unhinged and a little bit vicious. “Sometimes I wish I could bury you alive, but I would miss looking in your pretty eyes/Sometimes I wish I could hit you with my car, but I would miss waking up in your arms,” sings Là˜Là˜.
The record closes out with the somber “surgery.” The track is dramatically different from the EP’s previous five tracks, taking things down to a full-blown acoustic emo track. The singer opens up and breaks down, describing how she’s breaking but trying to be ok. She begs for someone to perform surgery and take away the pieces of her mind that contain the memories of her former love. You can hear the heartbreak in her voice, and her lyrical honesty is powerful enough to pull on anyone’s heartstrings. The track is a beautiful but subtle touch to quiet the intensity of what preceded it.
Listen to overkill below: