A twitchy electronic soundscape that explores the personal confines of imposed femininity, Brighton-based artist and producer Lucy Sheehan aka O Hell has shared their latest single, ‘I Watch The Women’. The follow up to previous releases ‘Down’ and ‘Untangle’, the new track is underscored by a quiet agitation, released via atmospheric synths, crystalline beats and hushed vocals.
After years spent touring and recording music in alternative bands around the UK and fronting PROJECTOR, Sheehan has ventured into fresh sonic territory under their new moniker O Hell. Influenced by a love of eclectic, brooding soundscapes and a desire for creative independence, Sheehan continues to explore their new sound further on ‘I Watch The Women’, deconstructing their notion of femininity and reassessing the personal toll this process can take.
“‘I Watch The Women’ is about feeling distanced from your femininity: being drawn to it and wishing you embodied the classic vision of womanhood, but sensing you’re on another side of it,” Sheehan explains. “The first lines came from a moment I recall, standing across the street from a nice cafe, the women outside looked so polished, real, womanly. I felt like a girl, or something else?’
I wrote it while living mostly in a cabin last winter, quite isolated, picking at drum patterns. I think that feeling of abstraction, even alien-ness, guided the lyrics and delivery towards being off-kilter, almost at odds with the outside world, even the language itself. Later I spent a long time with George Godwin (Moon Panda, Zooni) exploring weird textures, re-amping, tape delays etc to find the track’s atmosphere. Then at Christmas, he handed me a tape of a mix he’d done, to tape, and it was perfect.”
Accompanied by a video, shot by Godwin and directed by Sheehan, the visuals show O Hell traversing the stairwells of a block of flats, reflecting the tumultuous inner journey that’s explored in the track’s lyrics.
Check out the video for ‘I Watch The Women’ below.
Photo Credit: Annie Dorrett