The shining diamond at the heart of Toronto-based Poesy’s new single is her voice. It bursts into full force in the stomping chorus of ‘Diamonds’ with a magnetism akin to some great gobstopper jewel at the heart of an Agatha Christie mystery. Here, at its best, Poesy is giving Florence (of The Machine) a run for her money, or Hannah Reid of London Grammar.
Florence is a good touchstone for understanding Poesy, for the Toronto-based artist goes for the same Pre-Raphaelite stylings as the flame haired Brit. In what seems to be a recent reinvention, Poesy describes herself as ‘a Victorian ghost with a lot of emotions and a lot of drums’. I love reinventions. I’ve always considered a taste for reinvention as a prerequisite of creative energy. This one has produced one of the most memorable artist definitions I’ve ever heard.
Poesy’s reinvention is marked by an instagram video (@poesyofficial) in the same wonderfully intoxicating and self-mythologising genre as Lana Del Rey’s ‘Ride’ video. Like Del Rey, Poesy is the type of artist who talks about themselves as having ‘always been’, and who questions the presence of life’s big absolutes. She seems to be the type to feel the weight of existence’s great, big eternity distilled through their own consciousness.
I just wish Poesy distilled some of that magical consciousness in her lyrics. ‘Diamonds’ is all audio gold, with left-field, Gotye-like sounds in the production by Derek Hoffman, and Poesy performing both low breathy vocals in the verses and the power of the choruses excellently. I just can’t help but feel the words shoot down an indistinct and well trodden a path, revealing nothing of the bohemian creative energy behind them. The track could still be a rousing, radio-ready pop anthem without such broad lyrics. ‘Is it sink or swim in this world we’re living in?’ – I think we know the answer to that. I’m losing my taste for language which hides the intricate excellencies and pains of life in vague absolutes. I want artists to stare them right in the face.
But that’s not to say ‘Diamonds’ isn’t beautiful in its own right. The chilling beauty of such powerful vocals are enough to have you hitting repeat, even if the lyrics might not be. I could listen to Poesy roar ‘Oh my love’ on a loop for days. It’s something not to miss.
‘Diamonds’ is out today, 20th November.