Lauren Mayberry – “Are You Awake?”
Chvrches singer Lauren Mayberry announced a solo tour in July without actually releasing any solo music. Now, just days before that trek kicks off, Mayberry has unveiled her debut solo single. “Are You Awake?” neither maintains the synthy sound of Chvrches nor returns to the guitar-based indie and folk-rock sounds Mayberry once traded in before her Chvrches days. Instead, it’s a piano ballad co-written with Tobias Jesso Jr. and Matthew Koma, the track’s producer.
“Are you awake?” Mayberry sings at the start. “I’ve been thinking through some things/ Been counting their babies and their diamond wedding rings/ Are you awake, I feel a sadness in the skin/ It happens sometimes now.” Over the course of its runtime, the song builds up noisy intensity without ever dropping a beat.
A statement from Mayberry:
“Are You Awake?” is a song that started on a rainy day last December with Tobias Jesso Jr. I was thinking a lot about loneliness and homesickness, and as soon as Tobias started playing the chords, the lyrics and melody came to me really quickly. I finished the song with my friend Matthew Koma, who really understood what I was trying to say.
For a long time, I couldn’t imagine doing anything outside of CHVRCHES but I think some things that I needed to write had to be done from purely my own point of view. I never really thought I’d write a piano ballad, or a solo album full stop, so life really is full of surprises. I am really looking forward to this chapter and can’t wait for people to hear more of the music.
Also, here’s “Something Real,” the latest from Protection, the solo project of Mayberry’s Chvrches bandmate Iain Cook: