Welsh alt-rock trio The Joy Formidable tears into the strength of authenticity, regardless of mess, with their new single, “Cut Your Face”.
If visceral vulnerability were a song, this would be it. The band begins the track in a no-nonsense, chuggy, and interestingly subdivided ensemble of drums, bass, guitar, and synth. Ritzy Brian’s ethereal and invitingly haunting vocals join the force with compelling metaphors and imagery soon after the intro. Lines like “The fingers of the ocean/And cares, which cairns, post cares so high” beautifully detail the impetus of the song with deft obscurity.
In explaining the song’s purpose, lead singer and guitarist Ritzy Brian said,
“Cut Your Face’ is a reminder to myself that even in shyness, when that voice is telling you to hide away, that what I really want is deep, authentic connection. The only way to satisfy that longing is to be vulnerable, messy and imperfect…and life is all the more beautiful because of it.”
This purpose is made evident in a chorus awash with synths, pianos, and reverbed vocals. All this lays the ground for Brian to deliver the lines, “You cut your face/They’ll never quite see you/It’s a gameshow baby”. The listener can hear in these lines a warning not to water down their true self, as it’s all a game anyhow.
With a dynamically gripping middle section that is centered around pizzicato strings building into a jam, there is plenty to chew on in “Cut Your Face”. The chorus strikes the balance between accessible and engaging for both the casual and discerning listener, drawing them in for repeat listens.
Listen to “Cut Your Face”.
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