JOY. finally returns with the sultry ‘Smoke Too Much’
The fresh, breathy vocals of 20-year-old JOY. have been absent from our lives for a few years now, but she’s igniting her inevitably eruptive return with the euphoric ‘Smoke Too Much.’
Her ODE EP offered subdued and billowy slow burners, but ‘Smoke Too Much’ is a breath of light for the multitalented JOY.. The delicate piano melody that gently leads us into the song is perfect for her angelic vocals to waft around. The hypnotic beat casually struts in and the song evolves from sultry crooner to entrancing electro-pop that soars far beyond anything she’s done before.
Not to mention, the fact that JOY. produces her own material as well as being the vocalist has paid off tenfold here. Her intimate knowledge of both – a knowledge only she can have – allows her to weave the beat in with her airy vocals so meticulously that it becomes flawless yet still deeply emotional. “Maybe I smoke too much / I had the weirdest feeling yesterday,” she sings beautifully, as she chokes on her paranoia and her loss of love. JOY.’s fearless dive into her flaws and her complexity as a human has always been endearing, but never has it sounded so stunning.
‘Smoke Too Much’ is a gorgeously hopeless pop banger that proves the spark JOY. ignited all those years ago hasn’t gone out quite yet, so put your ashtrays away.
Words by JACKSON LANGFORD