Methyl Ethel – the nom de plume of Western Australian artist Jake Webb – has shared new single ‘Matters’.
Following on from the groove-heavy previous single ‘Neon Cheap’, Methyl’s latest is a shimmering synth-pop bop, with a frantic, anxious tension consistently bubbling just underneath the surface.
In a statement, Webb explained that the song’s genesis came as he was living in LA, realising he had no idea how to respond should an earthquake occur. “It occurred to me that there is the ever-present danger lurking beneath your feet,” he said. “It’s just something you have to learn to live with, this aura of danger.
“There are fault lines that run through all of us, threatening to open when we least expect. As the world begins to reckon with a certain cracking of the foundations, I thought it would be interesting to explore the frenetic, reactive feeling, of danger.”
‘Matters’ arrives alongside a surreal, glitched-out performance video directed by Duncan Wright. Check that out below. Heads up: there’s a photosensitivity warning for people with epilepsy.
“I thought it would be interesting if we (the band and I) basically all filmed a video from our perspective,” Webb says. “The song deals with the idea of something catastrophic looming over you. What better way to represent that frenetic, anxious feeling than with shaky phone footage.
“So, we taped our phones to our chests and shot a video in a cellar in two hours. It’s instant and, I think, echoes the reaction a lot of people have to catastrophe, they pull out their phones.”
Methyl Ethel returned with prior single ‘Neon Cheap’ back in April, alongside the news they’d signed with Future Classic for the song and future releases.
Early last year, the band released the ‘Hurts to Laugh’ EP, reappearing again in June to share ‘Holy Days’ from a Remote Control Records compilation called ‘Bloom and Simmer’. Their last full-length album was ‘Triage’ in 2019.