Mallrat – Rockstar

‘Rockstar’, the first track from Mallrat’s upcoming debut album, out in 2021, arrived on Wednesday. The press release goes on to say “from the sleepy town of Brisbane, Australia, the 21-year-old delivers refreshingly honest observations of day-to-day life layered over subtly beguiling melodies. There’s a slow-burning restlessness in her sound that is impossible to ignore. The latest offering is the first piece of new music since last summer’s breakout single ‘Charlie’ from the critically-beloved ‘Driving Music’ EP.”

About the track, Mallrat (the pseudonym of Grace Shaw) says: “I feel like a lot of the songs I’ve been writing lately have been me realising my power. I wrote the chorus a year and a half ago and on its own that chorus has a completely different attitude. When I wrote the rest of the song a year later, I was feeling a lot more sure of myself. When you listen to that chorus in the context of the verses and the really aggressive guitar outro, it completely flips the perspective of everything. It’s interesting how time can reframe things that you still think and are still true but just give them a whole new house to sit in.”

I really love this track. There’s a dreamy quality to its sound, and her Lana Del Rey-esque vocals compliment the soft rock instrumentals perfectly. For the final thirty seconds, there’s a clear sonic shift, with Mallrat’s soothing voice replaced by coarse guitar riffs. They add a specific vibe to the track. For me, she sounds like she is in the clouds and floating through her mind until the ending, which makes me think of an aeroplane soaring through the same clouds.

‘Rockstar’ is another evolution in Mallrat’s career, into indie dream pop alt-rock territory. I’m very excited to see where this shift in her sound takes her.

Ryan Powell