Image credit: Mae Sass
Hot on the heels of her standout debut single ‘cool kid’, and recent singles ‘artifical’ & ‘green screen’ hotly tipped 17-year-old YALA! Records signee Cathy Jain releases her highly anticipated debut EP, ‘artificial’.
“In a word my “artificial EP” is about authenticity.” says Cathy. “Together, the four tracks take a look at how we define what is really “real” when we spend so much of our time either in our own heads or in a virtual world online. With each song on the EP, I’ve tried to create a snapshot of a few moments in someone’s life where they are thinking about this. I think that people (especially those my age) stress a lot about their image and how their life and feelings match up to what other people expect of them, but these songs have a more light-hearted, observational and kind of reassuring style rather than something heavy with a serious message, and this is reflected in the laid-back hazy vibe of the music. So, in the title track “artificial”, I’m picturing someone who feels like their life lacks authenticity but realises that their imagination and virtual life are all part of what makes up what they are. I picture someone sitting in a cafe lost in their own thoughts and there’s a bit of almost jazzy background piano to help create an image of that moment. All of the songs have this hazy, dream-like feeling but in quite different ways; more psychedelic in “green screen”, chilled R&B in “cool kid” and a darker, alternative style in “i see us in heaven”. I think the mix up in genres reflects the mixed up thinking about what is real and what’s fake, and how we tell the difference between the two.”
Echoing the modernist pop of Billie Eilish, the production flair of Frank Ocean’s more soothing moments, and Lana Del Rey’s nostalgia for the recent past; ‘artificial’ continues Cathy’s long distance collaboration with artist/producer Heron @ Cracked Analogue (based in India) who has co-written, produced and mixed all of her hazy, sun-kissed, R&B-tinged alt-pop tracks to date.
cool kid immediately made an impact on its release. Following a first play from 6Music’s Lauren Laverne, additional support came from Steve Lamacq, and Radio 1; adding the track to their coveted Introducing playlist; garnering big on-air talk ups from Annie Mac, Clara Amfo and Greg James, while Jack Saunders subsequently named it as his Next Wave pick. The track also made its way onto major playlists across Amazon Music, Apple Music, Deezer and Spotify.
Glowing write-ups from, Clash, The Line Of Best Fit and NME added to the groundswell of support from leading industry tastemakers.
Cathy Jain was raised in China before relocating to the UK at the age of 13. She not only speaks fluent Chinese, but also plays the traditional instrument the guzheng, which reiterates her diverse talents as a musician, vocalist, producer and songwriter. In the wake of a handful of recent live shows, including a standout performance at Latitude, news on forthcoming additional dates will follow shortly.
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