Whilst most artists are seeking fame and fortune, Sky Ferreira’s career has taken a u-turn into the underground. Her record company may have primed her to be the next Britney but Ferreira had very different ideas. In early single ‘One’, Ferreira looked uncomfortable with the direction her music was taking – the video for it showing her dead in the eyes and contorting her body as if someone else was controlling her music.
It’s not until last year’s Dev Hynes-produced single ‘Everything Is Embarrassing’ that she started to be considered as a serious artist and not just a packaged pop star. Vulnerable and relatable – it felt more real, a true reflection of Ferreira.
This vulnerability has seeped through to her debut album Night Time, My Time. The artwork, shot by Enter The Void director Gaspar Noe, shows a topless Ferreira looking nervously into the camera. The look is one of someone who is aware they’re being constantly watched and is baring themselves both physically and mentally regardless.
Musically, it isn’t a continuation from the Ghost EP which featured ‘Everything Is Embarrassing’ with the exception of future-hit ‘I Blame Myself’. “Is it because you know my name or is it because you saw my face on the cover?” Ferreira says defiantly, hitting out at all the people who think they know her because her life is publicised.
Not treading lightly anymore, ‘Omanko’ – Japanese swear word for vagina, is unsurprisingly the least accessible song here. Channelling My Bloody Valentine with soft, echoed vocals and heavily distorted wah-wah guitars, she talks about “Reading Japanese comics” and “Fucking Japanese mako (girl)”. Her crystal-clear vocals often sit on top of gritty, fuzz-pop guitars throughout the album– bringing to mind the dynamics of Sleigh Bells.
On shoegaze stomper ‘Kristine’, Ferreira sings “Stabbing pins in my hands” so sweetly through a thin veil of autotune that you have to listen twice to make sure you caught it right. Her new-found attitude is present throughout, perhaps partly due to her public relationship with Zachary Cole Smith of DIIV and the recent misstep which saw them caught with a considerable amount of narcotics.
‘Nobody Asked Me (If I Was Okay)’ sees her at her angriest, spitting out the words “You don’t seem to care if I’m feeling lost” as if her body is rejecting them. Night Time, My Time isn’t the album we expected from Ferreira but it’s a welcome curveball – less Britney, more Courtney Love.
Words by Aurora Mitchell