LISTEN: Kristen Merritt – ‘I Don’t Think ABout You’

I Don’t Think About You’ is the woozy new single from Brooklyn-based artist Kristen Merritt. With heartfelt lyrics and laid-back instrumentation, this neo-soul groove is the perfect soundtrack for bright summer mornings. ‘I Don’t Think About You’ is positive and light, sung from the perspective of someone who has found clarity and has been released by it. It feels as though each word is sung through a smile, creating a warm and inviting soundscape.

Describing her music as “high-key” (high energy) neo-soul, you can hear the influence of Lauryn Hill and Erykah Badu in Merritt’s slick and chilled-out arrangements, with lush keyboard flourishes highlighting the soulful lyrics. She also cites inspiration from her contemporaries, H.E.R. and Daniel Cesar.

‘I Don’t Think About You’ comes together magically with live instrumentation, it oozes a sincere human quality and vulnerability. The smooth and spacious percussion is reminiscent of Motown recording, providing a soothing groove. To accent the music, the guitar plays jazzy chords that add to the woozy ambiance. Smooth and sweet, Merritt’s vocal melody meanders up and down, flowing effortlessly as it leads the song. The vocal melodies and harmonies interweave and overlap, creating delicious textures and easing transitions into new musical ideas and sections.

Of the meaning behind the track, Merritt reveals: “It is the song of coming to terms with feelings for someone, feelings that you denied, for feeling as though they were misplaced on that person. In coming to terms with these feelings, I have reflected in the lyrics the ‘five stages of grief’: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and finally, acceptance. There is also an additional component of something almost happy/joyous in that acceptance, content with the understanding of the situation, even if it didn’t pan out how you wanted it to.

‘I Don’t Think About You’ is accompanied by a vintage-inspired, artfully created new video, directed by Marissa Yates. Watch here:

Joi, Kristen’s debut album, is set for release 14th September.

Jaz Kelly
@surfjaz

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