Lydia Ainsworth – “PSI” (Stereogum Premiere)

Lydia Ainsworth came to our attention with her earlier single, “Malachite,” which I regret not posting when it came out. Fortunately we got a second chance when she put out its jaw-dropping music video, which snagged a #1 spot on Best Videos Of The Week. Later this year she’ll release her debut album on Arbutus, titled Right From Real. The second single from that album, “PSI,” is described best by Ainsworth herself when she sings, “We are both night and day.” This is mysterious, eerie music as ghostly as the best things Arbutus has given us over the years, but there’s a brightness too, in the twinkling music-box melodies and Ainsworth’s constantly morphing but always deeply expressive voice. But “PSI” doesn’t rely on its contrasts to achieve greatness: Everything melts together to make an extremely distinct sound from one very promising new artist. Listen below.

Right From Real is out 9/30 via Arbutus. Pre-order it here.