Friday, 10 July 2020
Introducing: Baby Queen
Today’s new artist is South African born, London based singer-songwriter Bella Lathum. She goes by the name of Baby Queen. She makes songs that have a big pop heart, but they’re just a little roughed up around the edges; I could imagine her listening to Dua Lipa and Taylor Swift but then putting on Avril Lavigne and Paramore loud and mixing those ideas up to serve as her own musical dish of angst. She’s already had a hand in writing for Sofi Tukker (featured many times on this blog) which is made more interesting because of the fact that they have a song called Baby I’m A Queen. Although Bella wasn't to my knowledge involved in that one.
Bella has just two songs on line at the moment - although if you do your Google detective work you might find that she first released some music in 2014 when she still lived in Durban.
The debut single under her Baby Queen moniker was called Internet Religion and it explores the slightly problematic and narcissistic relationship many people have with the likes of Instagram: “Let me show you all the best parts of my life, my clothes and my phone and the gap in my thighs,” she sings of the unreal identities that some people seem desperate to forge on line. There's a certain irony that people criticise fake news yet are happy to fake it on Instagram, Snapchat etc. Maybe in years to come we'll look back and think of filtered selfies as weird freakish exhibitionism, or maybe it will seem odd to not to participate?
Now it’s coupled with the newly released Buzzkill, which mixes a spoken drawl in the verse with an ultra-hooky chorus. But despite the bubbliness of the melody Buzzkill isn’t a happy tune: “When the party came to life I imagined I was dead,” she tells us as she ruminates on her unhappiness and how life is basically crap. There’s nothing crap about the tune though which makes it two out of two for Baby Queen. I’m filing her in the top drawer of my ones to watch.
Baby Queen - Internet Religion
Baby Queen - Buzzkill