Introducing: Esther Joy

Esther JoyLord, it's dark out. Hot, wretched evenings punctuated by the rattling of teeth and the burning of tiki torches. Someone's friend got hit, or they saw it. More than ever, the world needs heroes who have learned to navigate the night by nothing but matches and a clear voice. Esther Joy is no stranger to the darkness, but my word, her songs are incandescent.

They've guided her long enough.

"Most of my teenage years and early 20s were super dysfunctional and I did a great job of royally fucking up," she says. "The thing that pieced me back together was rediscovering making music. I realised that you could build worlds of sound and textures in a computer without ever having to leave your bedroom... From then on I taught myself how to produce and began writing electronic music."

The result of this is Psychic Tears, her debut EP that channels the euphoric horror of Zola Jesus with brooding, synth-heavy exorcisms. Nothing here feels accidental, except perhaps the crossover appeal that singles "Samgel" and "Friendless Necessity" have generated, acquiring fans and airplay across Radio 1, 6music, XFM, and - let's not be shy now - us.

For someone who's also a member of Charli XCX's band, it sounds like the Leeds-born, London-based artist has finally found her own feet in the music world. "I couldn’t express myself musically in the way I wanted to for such a long time, and I just wanted someone to swoop in and make it all easy," she admits. "Never finding those people was the best thing that could have happened because it forced me to get better on my own." Striking out on her own is working out pretty well for Esther, and we're glad; Psychic Tears is the white-hot starlight we didn't realise we needed this week.

Find out more about Esther Joy on her Facebook page, and listen to new single "Friendless Necessity" below.


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