Mallory Merk is not afraid to be herself or make music that is true to herself. Merk’s no-frills attitude comes across in everything she does, whether it’s her social media, her activism, or her day-to-day conversation or her music. At only 20 years old Merk is already making a name for herself. She was born in Louisiana but raised in New Jersey. She has always had a love for music and she grew up around it in her life. She has taught herself guitar when she was only 12. Before her music career, Merk even spent time in the fashion industry in New York City where she hustled for her craft. She would end up being involved in Kanye West’s Yezzy line at 14 as well as appearing on billboards across the U.S as the star of Rhianna’s Fenty beauty line, and also modeling for Gucci. All of her time spent being in the fashion industry gave her the money and resources to kickstart her music career.
Mallory is definitely a workaholic, never stopping and always determined. That’s evident in her music. She gained some hype in 2016 after she released a cover of Drake’s “Marvin’s Room” and from there worked on a few projects here and there in LA. Her new project Strangers is a coming of age EP. It takes inspiration from Clairo, Rex Orange County, and Frank Ocean. It’s so named because for Mallory, so many of the characters in her life feel unknown to her. It speaks to a confusion that generations of teens experience, not just Gen Z. It speaks to figuring out who people are, where allegiances lie, what to trust, and how to present yourself, when you’re still learning what life is about. The songs document Mallory’s past year. She doesn’t sugarcoat it. “It’s been a hard time,” she says. “I’ve had losses in my life. I didn’t mean for this to be about struggling and spitefulness, people preying on you and watching your every move waiting for you to mess up, but I needed to express that life is difficult. It’s OK to have emotions. Some song on the EP are emotional like “Twelve Thirteen” which calls on asserting yourself and letting go. “Ghosts” tells the story of the bad friendships she had survived through her drug abuse.
The EP as a whole is a authentic, heart wrenching, documentation of all the growing pains Mallory went through. “I have different characters in each song and all of them are strangers to each other but together they sit.” Her unpolished voice glides over skittering beats and guitar reverb and leaves you feeling emotional. It’s a raw emotional EP that is true to who Mallory really is. “I just thought it was important to write about the perspective,” she says, revealing the importance of songwriting to her as a chance to hold herself to account. Mallory knows too well that drug use is glamorized in music. She wanted to show the other side of it. The reality. Her music is intended to cut through the pretty dreams and false perceptions. It’s her raw vision; intimate, relatable, and comforting. She recently released a video to her song “Fresh Out”, so check it out below. We can’t wait to see what else Mallory has in store!
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