23-year-old South Londoner Cosima makes gloomy, post-midnight pop – the kind that sounds best with the lights off, or maybe after a good cry. She packs big ambition, too, having recently put out a mixtape that doubles up as an arty short film.
On her latest track, the starry-eyed ‘To Build a House’, the newcomer burrows deep into her soul. “This song started as a poem I wrote about my father,” she explains in a note to fans. And it’s not hard to unravel the story within this song – one of being left at a loss and alone, struck by someone else’s absence. “Can I flick a switch and forget your name?” she asks. “Do I crawl right back, when I know that there’s no safety in your arms?”
As if the lyrics weren’t personal enough, you can hear the heartache in Cosima’s vocal, which was recorded in one take when she first penned the track. “I tried to rerecord it but there was something about the energy in the room when we wrote the song that couldn’t be replicated,” she says. “I think it we captured the exact moment that I finally resolved something that had always felt so open-ended to me. The process of writing this song and sharing those feelings with other people that evening made me feel less alone.”
She might not write gloom-busting doses of escapism, but in terms of capturing emotion within a 3-minute pop song, Cosima is up there with the best of them.
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