Fueled by a big-hearted guitar line, an unresolved chorus melody, and Daisy Victoria’s theatrical presence, “Pain of Dancers” leaps into the world with poise and vigor—just another striking,
swirling, anthem-y slice of pop-informed rock’n’roll from this promising young UK talent. (For those who missed her magical song “Nobody Dies,” from late 2014, go here, quickly.)
As much as I love pretty much everything she’s up to here, I think the deep allure is rooted first and foremost in her voice, which possesses a rare blend of richness and nuance; she invests herself fully in every note, and the subtle shifts from dusk to lightness are thrilling upon close listening. But unlike some performers blessed with natural vocal prowess, Victoria has her eyes and ears on all aspects of songcraft. Think of those synth squiggles we hear with the drumbeat in the opening seconds of the song: highly unnecessary and extremely wonderful. More centrally, there’s the super-appealing, low-register guitar line that introduces the song and recurs after each iteration of the chorus—an adroit counter-motif and nothing a singer merely trying to show off tends to bothers with. It’s this guitar line, in fact, that both grounds the song—the chorus never resolves on its own—and gives it its sky-high reach. I kind of can’t stop listening.
“Pain of Dancers” is a single, self-released last month. Thanks to Daisy for the MP3.