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Spotlight : Mardi Lumsden, 'Never Have I Ever'

Playful / Brutal / Breezy

Brisbane singer, musician and writer Mardi Lumsden has returned with a glorious new single, the second from a forthcoming sophomore album, and with a sound that trades some of her previous folk leanings for something more weightless which, in an ideal world, really ought to attract a whole lot of attention. Entitled 'Never Have I Ever', it's an unabashedly playful pop kiss-off in which Lumsden depicts her feelings for someone that are, well, nothing really.

"Never have I ever

Felt my heart flutter when you walk into the room

Never have I ever

Felt my eyes linger as you fix my auto-tune

I’ll never be your lover"

"It's the is the sweetest (yet kinda brutal) way to tell some you aren't really into them."

Ouch! Brutal indeed, yet it's difficult to feel bad for the guy, as Lumsden masterfully delivers the sinfully infectious hook and moodier verses with her archetypal saccharine and delightfully clear and pure pipes, however this one seems to see her with tongue firmly planted in cheek. Frenzied lyrics aside, 'Never Have I Ever' feels like a hell of a lot of fun with inklings of fellow pop indie-pop purveyors such as Hatchie, Japanese Breakfast, Frankie Cosmos and Benee sprinkled throughout the upbeat and rhythmic production. The result is impossible to deny.

Almost entirely self-sufficient, the track is not only self-released, but is also self-produced and recorded with partner Andrew Pennay in their home (a converted church). It was mixed by UK-based Charlie Holmes (Aurora, Ed Sheeran, Anne Marie) and mastered by Simon Francis (Charlie Puth, Julia Stone, Björk). And interestingly, the song is a result of a challenge issued by the I Heart Songwriting Club (an online collective to offer assistance with being better songwriter) around the theme 'candle'.

Says Lumsden: "Re-reading the challenge, it is a long way from the "candle" prompt, but the prompt put me in the location where the story unfolds: the end of a late-night uni party, most people had left and you are left playing drinking games with a couple of your best mates. The extra challenge was not to use the word 'candle' in the song. The lyrics in the final version of 'Never Have I Ever' are quite different to the first version, but the story and structure were all there from the start."


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Discover artists who perhaps you might not have heard of yet. With 'Spotlight' we want to capture incredible artists as they release great songs. It's a place to listen, love and discover something new and hear them and their songs we hope to hold on vinyl someday.


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