If 2022 has taught us anything, it’s that emo is back – but with a fresher, more feminine face. It’s an energy that can be felt far and wide in the UK, where the likes of Nova Twins and Wargasm are the forefront of a rising, woman-led nu-metal scene that’s twisting the genre with elements of pop to create a sharp, revitalised emo sound. Cassyette slots right in: with only a string of singles to her name, the Essex firebrand has already built a huge following within the rock community, and has amassed over a million followers on TikTok, performed with Frank Carter as he headlined Download Festival 2021, and supported My Chemical Romance on their comeback tour.
Her debut mixtape backs the hype. Recorded in her makeshift home studio, ‘Sad Girl’ is an elevated expansion of her previous work, though it still provides the tantalising spirit of searing early singles ‘Dear Goth’ and ‘Prison Purse’. The raspy vocals of opener ‘Mayhem’ are mixed with a slow-burn riff that bursts into a singalong chorus; the track is sleek in its production, and reminiscent of the anthems that defined Pink’s ‘Missundaztood’ album. ‘Sad Girl Summer’, meanwhile, bolsters that distorted ‘pop girl’ image with a buoyant drumbeat, as the track moves from its messy morning-after imagery to the defiant, desperate plea of the chorus: “I don’t wanna be a sad girl anymore!”, Cassyette belts.
The best moments are when Cassyette plunges into her heavier influences: from the exhilarating one minute of solid screamo that makes up ‘diehatecry’, to the Evanescence-like ‘September Rain’. Pop-metal gem ‘Like That’ is all about resisting expectations – something which Cassyette does repeatedly with her sound – and the track meshes spiralling guitars with a creeping kick-drum to create an empowering call-to-arms.
‘Take Take Take’ makes for a final torrent of energy, as it builds into a bitter, brutal breakdown. Cassyette is not an artist anyone can hope to pin down and box up: she’s proven she can do it all. With each release, she zooms off into the unexpected, showing that her appeal lies in that element of surprise.
- Release date: November 10, 2022
- Record label: Independent