Lila Blue’s folk marches to its own beat. Intrinsically idiosyncratic in nature, the singer-songwriter is not only known for crossing genre lines, but for doing so in ways that define her and no one else. It’s a bold claim to make, but in some ways, Blue is emerging as a next generation Fiona Apple; an artist who walks to their own rhythm with aplomb, engaging in music development in ways that have earlier been undiscovered. Blue can wrangle a song from out of any set of strings or keys that happen to be nearest to her, and if they come off as offbeat in recording then it’s all the better.
‘The Dead’ emerges from this mentality with an eerie sentiment, building a strikingly unusual atmosphere between the whisper of a cello and distant, heavy percussion. At its center, however, are Blue’s ethereal vocals, recalling old-time folk melodies with sweet melancholy and candor. Directed by Joanna Haigood, its music video illustrates the song’s full intent.
As Blue expresses on YouTube, “With sensitivity to the COVID-19 crisis, this song is one that I debated releasing at this time as we shot it prior to everything that’s occurred. After taking time to think it over, the thought of not releasing the video and not sharing the hard and beautiful work my collaborators and myself put in to bring it forth did not feel right. This is a song of mourning, and resilience, and love, and I hope it can be a space of solace for you like it has been for me.”
Words by: Jonathan Frahm