Yesterday, APRA announced the five finalists for the 2017 Silver Scroll Award. Today, exclusively for the Spinoff, the five artists discuss each other’s work.
Lorde on ‘Horizon’ by Aldous Harding
The first time I heard ‘Horizon’ – late at night, alone at Electric Lady – I specifically remember this feeling of my head snapping back and my mouth WATERING from pure jealousy. I hadn’t heard anything that good, that intricate and biting, in a long time. I watched this shitty YouTube video of Aldous performing it live over and over again (and that’s one of the things I like most about this song, that fact that it’s as much a visual experience as an aural one), and felt the horror and consumption of the big fight before the long trip across the world. This is such a woman’s song – like a secret just for us. It drips. “Lemme put the water in the bowl for your wounds, babe” – good God!!! How it tries on and then completely debones all the old cliches about female neglect and pain… I could only hope to write something this good in my lifetime.
Aldous Harding on ‘Richard’ by Nadia Reid
This is difficult because I know Nadia well. Nadia graces me with her discretion, I grace her with mine. I have been on the receiving end of her genius, vindication and vulnerability. I’m not going to try and impress her with my words or others with my words on her. Sometimes her writing makes me question who’s the older sister here. This is not the first time I’ve watched her romantically and creatively flip a self-deprecating inner dialogue to make something not only pleasurable but more importantly useful. If we’re talking about content, to me it’s simple. Richard was a good man till he wasn’t. Nadia will decide whether you are worth it in her own time. Unfortunately during this time Richard – though still a good man to many – talked himself into and out of the life of one of the most insightful songwriters of our corner and she wrote a song that I think deserves the award.
Nadia Reid on ‘Close Your Eyes’ by Bic Runga
I’ve been listening to Bic Runga since I was 15. Her album Drive and later Beautiful Collision were important soundtracks to my, at times turbulent, teenage years. In my opinion, she is one of the most important queens of the New Zealand music scene. Her voice is a comfort to me. Pure. Clear. Wise. Melancholic. It is an honour to be nominated for the Silver Scroll award alongside her.
Bic Runga on ‘Life of the Party’ by Chelsea Jade
I met Chelsea Jade at a dinner party one time. I liked her a lot because we had a nice nerdy conversation about that weird outsider artist Henry Darger. Life of the party indeed! I like Chelsea’s style, she’s funny and beautiful and owns her oddness in a totally unique way.
Chelsea Jade on ‘Green Light’ by Lorde
I tried to dig up the first thing I messaged Ella after hearing ‘Green Light’ for the first time but all I can find are repeat instances of expressed delight. Here is the most recent outbox message after another listen: ‘song is kissy fingers and release’. She’s a cinematic woman and this song is as panoramic as she is.
Read the Spinoff’s reviews of the finalists’ songs here.
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