Everyone, please give a warm welcome to TIAAN.
Back in April, the up-and-coming Australian singer-songwriter dropped a debut EP on Arnthor Birgisson‘s Swedish label, Aristotracks. He’s the genius producer who co-wrote and crafted everything from Jessica Simpson‘s “Irresistible” to Britney‘s “Out From Under” to Janet Jackson‘s “All Nite (Don’t Stop),” so…legend status.
The mini-collection includes smooth and slinky cuts like “Black Cars,” “Dive Deep” and “Be OK,” all backed by moody late night R&B beats, atmospheric electronica and melodic vocals recalling Jhene Aiko, BANKS, Cassie, Aaliyah and a bit of Sade.
But while the EP is surely a necessity, TIAAN has a new song out called “Devils Touch,” and it’s unbelievably incredible. (Yes, grammatically, it should be ‘Devil’s Touch,’ but…that’s fine.)
Sometimes, the beauty of a song lies in its simplicity, and that’s just what’s happening here: Backed by a bouncy electronic R&B pulse and warm synths gently floating in the distance, “Devils Touch” recalls the most delicate moments of of Jessie Ware‘s Devotion, and the melancholy lushness of MKS‘ “Flatline.”
The song is based on a hypothetical scenario, inspired by a friend.
“I was in the car with Joel Pott [the lead singer of the band Athlete], who is very happily married with beautiful children, and he mentioned a great subject: He was stuck in traffic one day and saw a chick giving him a bit of the eye across the road. He thought how different his life would be if he just rolled down his window and said hi,” she told Rookie. Escándalo.
Fittingly, the track is as sensual and curious as the situation in question implies, as the singer flirts with danger while lusciously cooing across the smooth production.
“You could be the one to mess it all up,” she concedes on the dreamy chorus. It’s a simple and straightforward hook — but I’ll be damned if it’s not one of the year’s finest. The track begs to be played on repeat, like a potentially disastrous decision being mulled over and over again.
This could be paradise — or a beautiful disaster. In any case, there’s no risk in giving TIAAN a go: She’s a sure thing, and only continuing to prove herself as one of pop’s most exciting new talents.
For more on the songstress, here’s TIAAN performing at PopJustice’s Deluxe Edition night.
“Devils Touch” was released on July 1. (iTunes)