Devon Thompson exposes her devious yet divine personality on ‘Skin’


Recommended Tracks: “I Love You But It Hurts Like Hell,” “Poison Me,” “She’s the Devil”
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Gwen Stefani, Karen O, Angel Olsen

Each day is a chance for us to work on our self-love and care, in the hopes that various routines and phrases will help us to become better people. Some phrases are really cliché, reminding us to “Love the skin you’re in” or “Be yourself,” but there is a lot of depth to those words. Artists like Devon Thompson are aware of this depth, and on her sophomore EP, the alternative artist brings this depth to the surface. With Skin, she highlights the complexities of her personality, comparing them to the complicated qualities of skin. She explains, “I see skin as just that. It’s delicate, yet so tough. Parts of us, you can prick with a needle and not feel much. But others, you’ll bleed instantly.”

A “bipolar rollercoaster of emotions,” as Devon once shared, Skin exposes the light and the dark qualities of Devon and her music, packaging them into one devious but divine project. The EP opens with “Straitjacket,” a dark pop track that reveals the pain that lingers in Devon’s veins. Over a driving guitar-based groove, she sings about an aggressive and intense kind of love, one that binds its lovers in a “straitjacket for two.” She then separates herself from the relationship on “I Love You But It Hurts Like Hell,” completely done with the way things are going. Devon keeps the phrases short, delivering all her rage and anger in lines like, “I love you and I’m overwhelmed / I wish you well / Too much damage to be felt.” Its thrashy, sharp, and unapologetic attitude makes it the perfect anthem for anyone who may be smiling on the outside but screaming on the inside.

We enter Devon’s revenge era on “So Close,” where she describes a deadly infatuation. You can almost envision the smoke coming off her breath on this slow-burning ballad, drawing out the last words of certain lines. Pulling us in, she sings, “Crimson, sweet release / Buried in the ashes / Eternal sleep,” the visuals taking us to a sinister place. But on “Poison Me,” the mood becomes brighter. To the sound of sunny guitars, Devon provokes her love interest, wanting this person to take control. This desire turns into a plea when she sings lines like, “I can’t help but let you / Poison me / Ease my pain” and “Lie to me,” her haunting vocals clashing with the poppy production.

For the final track, Devon leaves us with a warning. On “She’s the Devil, she changes her point of view. Instead of giving us more details about personal situations, she uses her experiences of love and pain to advise any listeners of potential red flags. All in all, she has grown from everything she has been through and is at the point where she no longer needs to focus on herself. To the raw sounds of the acoustic guitar, Devon advises, “Run, boy, run from your lover / She’s not the one / She’s the devil if I ever have seen one.” This stripped-back sound makes her vocals really pop, leaving us to sit and dwell in their dark hues.

With its gothic themes and devious tendencies, Skin is not for the lighthearted. It can be a little triggering to anyone who has felt or experienced these emotions or situations, but it could also be validating. We all have some darkness, thoughts that give into nightmares or grim fairytales, and Devon flirts with this side from track to track. She claims, “I have my soft, lovely, angelic side. But the rest of me is very dark, pessimistic, even hedonistic. I’m extremely proud to put out something so symbolic of who I am as a person and as an artist. A big theme of this EP and collection of songs is ‘Fairytales vs. Nightmares,’ fever dream-like visions I have.” Being true to yourself is tough to do, but Devon’s honesty on Skin is very admirable, making it an outstanding listen.

You can listen to Skin on platforms like Apple Music and Spotify.

In April, Devon will be playing two shows in Los Angeles. The first is on April 18 at The Venice West, followed by a show at The Bourbon Room on April 28.

Keep up with Devon ThompsonInstagram // Facebook // TikTok // YouTube // Website


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