If you are falling hard into your feelings this week, Liz Cass is here to embrace you with her new track “Near Miss”. A warm introduction to the sounds sure to fill out her upcoming debut album, The Words, Cass serves up a slice of her ethereal vocal tone and electro-pop sensibilities galore, all of which melt into a tune overflowing with nostalgic elements and groove-laden beats.
“‘I’m really excited about this record,” she keenly expresses. “It’s inspired by the no man’s land you find yourself in when you fall for someone who can’t decide if they’re in or out, but they scatter just enough crumbs to keep you hanging on. It’s so confusing and I think we’ve all been there. Music is like therapy for me and writing about stuff I’m going through helps give me some clarity and comfort.”
Upon the release of her new tune, the artist took some time to chat to Wonderland about her feelings towards her upcoming debut album and the excitement that comes with performing at your local. Head below to enjoy our interview with Liz Cass…
Hey Liz, how are you? Where are we speaking to you from right now?
I’m really good, thanks! I’m at home in West London.
What was the first thing you did this morning?
Make coffee! I’m a coffee addict. I don’t think my brain can engage in the morning before I’ve had my first cup!
Let’s talk music, what is your earliest memory of music?
Wow, good question. I have a terrible memory! I think my earliest memory is of my dad playing The Beach Boys in the car on the way to swimming lessons when I was 4.
And, how did this translate into the career you have now?
I don’t know if The Beach Boys had any direct effect on my music career! But, dad had quite a broad record collection and I loved singing along to his LPs of all the classics. He has great music knowledge and I definitely got really interested in different musical genres from a young age. Especially the 80s. That’s definitely my decade and my jam!
Congratulations on the release of “Near Miss”! Talk to us about the story behind the track! What inspired it?
Thank you! I’m really excited about this record. It’s inspired by the no man’s land you find yourself in when you fall for someone who can’t decide if they’re in or out, but they scatter just enough crumbs to keep you hanging on. It’s so confusing and I think we’ve all been there. Music is like therapy for me and writing about stuff I’m going through helps give me some clarity and comfort.
Do you have a favourite lyric from the track? If so, why is it your favourite?
“I’m shot in my mind, body, soul” – it sums up the headspace I was in when I wrote it. Being in one of those tricky romantic situations with the constant back and forth vibe is exhausting and completely takes over your brain and everything else. Or at least it does for me.
You will also be putting on a live show at Laylow next month! Talk to us about performing, what is your favourite part of being on stage?
I’m really looking forward to this show. It’s such a great live music venue and it’s also my local, so I feel really at home there. My favourite thing about being on stage is the way you connect with the audience through the music. It’s an experience you’re all sharing together in that moment. I gigged for years as a classic jazz singer but getting up and singing my own songs for people just feels different and there’s a unique energy in the room. You’re tucked away in the studio for ages writing, and then the final part of the journey is letting it out into the world and seeing how people react to it. I feel quite vulnerable at first but then I get a real high from it. When you see people are enjoying the music it’s the best feeling in the world.
And, we have your debut album, The Words, dropping later this year! What has it been like working on your first fully formed project?
A real journey full of mixed emotions! It’s been a long time coming… I took a big break from music and didn’t think I’d get the chance to come back to it in the way that I have. I feel very lucky. I never had any confidence in my songwriting when I was much younger and didn’t feel capable of expressing my feelings through my music in the way I wanted to. It left me feeling constantly frustrated. But when I found my way back to it in early 2019, I felt like I should just go for it and the songs started pouring out of me. I’ve been writing this album with Ed Graves for nearly three years and it’s a strange feeling for it to be finished and ready for the world. It makes me feel a bit anxious in some ways but there comes a point when you have to let it go and do its thing.
If you could describe the album in three words, which would they be?
Alternative pop therapy!
What excites you most about the rest of the year, apart from all of the exciting stuff we have discussed today?
I’m planning more live shows this autumn around the album release which I’ll be announcing soon. I’m also really excited to get back into the studio. I feel like the music has gone off on a new trajectory now so I want to keep that moving forward and experimenting. I may be getting a little ahead of myself but I’ve already started the next album!