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erin's artist of the month: indigo de souza

It’s time, gays. This month’s artist is genuinely my favourite artist ever. If I ever tell you otherwise, shoot me, slap me, and bring me to my senses in any way you choose.  


Indigo De Souza! What a woman. How can you hate a musician whose mother paints all of her album covers? And who features on Barack Obama’s favourite tracks of the year playlist? Not that I take my music taste from ex-presidents turned celebrities – that’s what friends are for. 


De Souza has been a long-time favourite of mine, although admittedly I am not a fan of her first three releases. Boysdon’t cry just do, and Nomoah, released in 2016, 2017 and 2018 respectively, all sound like if the ‘lo-fi sounds to study with’ girl gained a voice, abandoned her endless academic grind, and adlibbed over her tracks.  


Maybe that’s too harsh, however, they do all possess that too-quiet, mid-2010s shy girl electronic sound which I hate with a passion. I reserve this kind of resentment only for people who leave me on delivered for more than a day (what are you doing that is so important? And why is it not dying?).  


Her first album, I Love My Mom (2018) changed my opinion drastically. I was, to put it simply, gagged.  

I, too, love my mother! 


This album is tentatively my favourite album of all time, and this is coming from someone who is a massive whiplash-inducing playlist enjoyer. To give you an example of how much I Love My Mom impacted me, this album convinced me singlehandedly to invest in a cassette collection so I could listen to it in a Sports Team-listening, punchable indie man way.  


From the first to last track, I Love My Mom reflects on the tiny pains in minor romantic encounters – the situationships, hookups, sending a text against the advice of every single one of your friends – wrapped up in basslines and an electric guitar which I am deeply in love with.  


It’s about a third of a breakup album – it doesn’t always deal with the direct consequences of the end of De Souza’s trysts, but the feeling of being alone again after they are over. What I love about Indigo De Souza is that she sings with the sense of almost having found inner peace (alright Master Oogway, calm yourself), or at least fond nostalgic resignation. If not that, then tiredness. She’s by herself, she’s been through some stuff, and that’s okay! Funnily enough, that’s also what I said to myself when I slipped down Dempster Terrace in the rain and landed on my ass.  


The standout track on this album for me – although I love them all – is undoubtedly “Ghost.” It neatly summarises the main points of the album: namely “I am not as lonely as I think I am”, and “I love my mom more than any of you fools”. The latter is perhaps the realest line in the history of music, up there with “Get it hot like Papa John” (“Femininomenon”, Chappell Roan), “If a bitch want beef, give her beef stew” (“Lgbt”, CupcakKe) and “I look like Robert De Niro” (“Sexuality”, Billy Bragg).  


The song gently deflates an unknown lover’s ego. I mean gently in the sense that it’s not heavy metal; saying the lyric “you are not as funny as you think you are” is likely to deteriorate your chosen victim’s mental state to suicidal levels (source: tried and tested). But to be fair to Indigo, many of you do need to have your sense of humour euthanised. 


Moving on to her second album, Any Shape You Take (2021) opens with the track “17”. This song always catches me off guard because it contains autotune you pretty much never see again (much like the money I gave to Starfields in 2022). However, it’s a pleasing track once you get used to the change of sound, and I think if the Goombas from the Super Mario franchise ever released an indie song, this is what they would come up with. The album itself continues on the same confessional theme as I Love My Mom, but now with added existentialism. It happens to the best of us.  


You do also get a nice break from just music about a third of your way through Any Shape You Take, thanks to the track “Real Pain”. This track dissolves into screaming ambience about a minute and a half into itself, quickly cutting back into indie as soon as you think you can’t take any more despair. Just like the phenomenon of studying in cafes for background noise, there is nothing better for self-reflection than the overwhelming sounds of a breakdown in your ears.  


Other highlights on this album include the tracks “Kill Me” and “Darker Than Death”, which are both very positive, uplifting titles. 


Her equally happy newest release All Of This Will End (2023) embraces a more electronic sound than the first two albums. Although I was wary going into this due to my previous hatred of her earlier releases, tracks like “Losing” and “Smog” left me pleasantly surprised. It’s almost like people grow and develop as musicians as time passes! Wild! Although it doesn’t have the tracks I love the most, “Younger & Dumber” is still up there as one of my favourites – and it’s Obama’s too! We’re like, so similar. It almost justifies my choice to study IR. The album cover is also my favourite cover yet, because I love orange, sunsets, and the skulls with tits have really grown on me.  


Wrapping up another month, I would like to reiterate that Indigo De Souza is my favourite artist ever and I really do not care what you think. Post 2017, each and every track of hers hits in some way, and fits into a little corner of indie I didn’t know I needed. Anyone who stops a track to scream is a favourite of mine. Plus, she has the classic Erin qualifier of fantastic hair. 

 

TLDR – a new section for those with the attention span of a snapped elastic band 

Favourite album: I Love My Mom (2018) 

Reason: banger after banger 

Favourite song: “Real Pain” from Any Shape You Take (2021) 

Reason: I like the screaming (edgelord) 

 

erin

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