Singer-songwriter MAY-A has become one of the most promising young artists in the country. Racking up a stack of sold out shows across the nation, a dedicated community of supporters and a Hot 100 #1 in her Flume collab, ‘Say Nothing’, you could be forgiven for thinking that she’s a veteran of the local music scene, despite her debut EP ‘Don’t Kiss Your Friends’ coming out in just 2021. And while her ever-growing list of accomplishments is impressive to say the least, there’s so much more to the young muso than her success both locally and abroad. While songwriting is a main focus, her passion for creativity extends past the sonics and into the visual aspects of creating a world.
Australian Singer-songwriter MAY-A is the most promising rising artist. Racking up a stack of sold-out headline shows at home in Australia and in the UK, touring the globe with 5 Seconds of Summer, Flume and Wallows, an ARIA nomination, topping triple j’s Hottest 100 with Flume on their collab ‘Say Nothing’ and her dedicated fan community – you’d be forgiven for thinking she’s a veteran of the music scene. Her debut EP Don’t Kiss Ur Friends came out in 2021 and while while since then her list of accomplishments is impressive to say the least, there’s so much more to the young muso than her success both locally and abroad. While songwriting is a main focus, her passion for creativity extends past the sonics and into the visual aspects of creating a world.
Like a light fabric ebbing and flowing in accordance with the human condition, MAY-A’s artistry is unwavering in its spontaneity. But most importantly, it’s fiercely honest. Such a sentiment was immediately clear on her 2020 breakout single ‘Apricots’ creating a sense of euphoria that has become synonymous with her sound, the very same feeling is rife throughout her forthcoming EP, Analysis Paralysis.
A potent blend of light and dark, Analysis Paralysis is an exploration of MAY-A’s musical ponderings and fascinations. Beginning with the multi-genre ‘Sweat You Out My System’, she sets a tone of experimentation with her inclusion of both singing and rapping atop an indie-rock soundscape. It’s an intimate insight into the extent of MAY-A’s vulnerability.
Naturally, however, this is an EP to get in your feels in as much as it is to throw down to, with ‘Something Familiar’ a reflection on not being able to kick a past relationship. A sweeter, slightly more innocent younger sibling to ‘Sweat You Out My System’ with the songwriter embracing her powerful head voice on the title lyric as she embraces the nostalgia that results from connecting with a former flame.
The relational focus continues on ‘Your Funeral’, the eclectic songwriter experimenting with self-deprecating tonalities as she pens an unofficial red flag anthem for anyone who’s ever been colour blind in love. It’s here we see the first signs of MAY-A’s evolution both as a songwriter and lover, with her acceptance of romantic incompatibility on full display as she sings, “That’s so juvenile/Cus this is the usual /If you really think that we’re suitable /Then that’s your funeral.” It’s a surreal demonstration of brutal honesty, and continues to draw you into the orbit of Analysis Paralysis.
MAY-A begins to ease us out of the world of ‘Analysis Paralysis’ with plenty of patience and grace, slowing things down for the meditative ‘Lola’. Written about the self-contained relationships where a significant other bears two different masks in private and public, MAY-A captures the confusion and sense of helplessness one feels when they realise that their love is unrequited. Despite the hurt and rejection inherent to the subject matter, MAY-A finds strength from the outset as she sings, “Look at me Lola, Lola/ Don’t leave me hanging on”.
Perhaps the emotional climax of Analysis Paralysis, MAY-A puts it all on the line in the hard-hitting ‘ifyoulikeitlikethat, the song acting as a form of self-therapy as she forces herself to acknowledge all the trauma she’s endured. An anger fueled anthem on viewing your past for what it really was, as opposed to what you wished it would be. It’s one of MAY-A’s most intimate moments on the record, her emotive vocal of “Give me that blood sweat tears right back” placing you right there in the thick of it with her as you get a first-hand insight into her relational fallout.
The journey of ‘Analysis Paralysis’ is one that’s tumultuous to say the least, however, the second last track ‘Guilty Conscience’ helps the listener brace for its eventual conclusion. Musically, this is MAY-A at her most precise. The incorporation of silence throughout the track helps to add to its captivating nature, keeping you on your toes throughout its two minute runtime as you’re further immersed into its soundscape.
Ending the EP with ‘Superior Liar’, MAY-A takes inspiration from greats like Radiohead and Talking Heads as she crafts an anthemic ballad destined for stadium singalongs. Comprised of a steady drum line along with measured vocals and guitar riffs, a thrilling closer to the emotional rollercoaster that is Analysis Paralysis. It gives a promising sneak peek into the heights MAY-A and her treasure trove of love songs is destined for.
An important step forward in her musical and artistic journey, Analysis Paralysis out on the First of September is set to further cement MAY-A as one of the most exciting artist in the country right now, with a bunch of shows lying on the horizon, in both Australia and the world beyond, the 21-year-old is poised for what’s sure to be her biggest year yet.
An important step forward in her musical and artistic journey, Analysis Paralysis further cements MAY-A the most exciting artist in the country right now, with a bunch of shows lying on the horizon, in both Australia and the world beyond, the 21-year-old is poised for what’s sure to be her biggest year yet.