Northern Irish singer-songwriter project SOAK has released a new single, the second to kick off the new upcoming album If I Never Know You Like This Again, which is set to drop on May 20th via Rough Trade Records.
Bridie Monds-Watson, the person behind SOAK, has said of the new song: “[It’s about] the weight of time and the perpetual fear of reaching the end of your life, unsatisfied with how you’d spent it. The song came out of a slump phase, I wasn’t really a fan of myself and honestly just felt rather lost. In ways that felt like its own purgatory. I was trying to figure out how to make myself feel better, become a ‘better version’ of myself. So I guess whilst this song is about panic, it’s equally about the pursuit of change.”
Admittedly, it can be difficult to charge such a specific meaning into an album, let alone a song. However, ‘Purgatory’ pulls through, both in terms of musicality and lyrics. The forlorn, filmic sound of the melody anchored with a vintage-inspired bassline makes this song sound as if it could signal the roll of the credits in an indie movie.
Getting into the lyrics, “These days avalanche me/ Another year flees the scene/ I can’t shake hands with the end/ But it’s breathing down my neck/ I used to wish I was someone else.” It communicates that exact feeling that Monds-Watson was getting at. However, something tells me that even if they didn’t make this clear, simply listening to the song could bring that across easily.
SOAK continued to say of the record, “This record is the most accurate picture of me. I felt no pressure at all, it was almost like I was ranting as I was writing. When I was looking to the past, it was as though I had a big lottery ball of all my recent memories and I would just randomly select which one I wanted to unpack. It helped me to process my past.”
If there’s one thing for certain, this song brings that stripped-down nostalgia with just the right amount of sweet-natured aesthetic, and here’s to hoping the album will do the same.
You can take a listen to SOAK’s new single ‘Purgatory’ down below, and keep an eye out for their new album, out on May 20th.