Skip to main content

INDEPENDENT SONG RELEASE: Tess Posner, “Supernova”


Singer/Songwriter Tess Posner has released her new single “Supernova” on International Woman’s Day. She’s done this in honor of those who identify as women (trans or otherwise) and who have been victims of sexual abuse. She states on her website that 1 out of 3 women have experienced sexual or physical violence in their lifetime. Often times it feels like this stat is probably more like 3 out of 3.

“Supernova” begins with a slow electric guitar played over what sounds like ethereal keyboard notes played backwards. Posner’s voice is somehow both strong and soft as she sings: “One summer evening, August 31st/ Your anger swelled like a cloudburst / You hit me hard, this time the worst / I let out a hum, and became the Universe…

The naming of a specific date causes me to worry that she is either singing about an actual incident, taken from either the headlines or from her own experience. (Eerily enough, a Google search turns up a Washington Post article about Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte claiming that as long as women are beautiful, there will be rape.)

Posner’s song goes on to speak of how her abuser sees himself as punishing her for her misbehavior, as if his violence is something she deserves. She fears for her life, then decides instead to toss aside the fear and become a “supernova,” a giant star exploding with the brilliance of her resolve to survive. This is also when the song itself explodes with the brilliance of its chorus, the music swelling around Posner’s voice as it gains volume: “Your cages can’t contain me / Your blows no longer maim me / Your words cannot constrain me…” 

It’s a powerful track, both lyrically and musically. Singing about such a sensitive topic, it would’ve been easy to make the song self-pitying or mawkish. Instead Posner finds strength in tragedy, gathering energy from the abuse. Clocking in at a concise 3:03, the tune makes for a solid anthem for all sexual abuse victims. Though she likely wouldn’t abide by the term “victim” for too long.

“Thought I was small / Just your paper doll,” she sings in the song’s bridge. “You tried to hide me, trick me / Smother me, cover me / It was your downfall…” 

I believe her.

Listen to "Supernova" HERE.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

INDEPENDENT SONG RELEASE: Ethos, “V: Parents”

Ethos is the stage name for Alex Hlavna, a 19-year veteran of the Cleveland, Ohio music scene where he played guitar , bass, and drums on numerous recordings. He has now released his own song entitled “V: Parents” from his new album Ten Commandments. The V is the Roman numeral for 5, as in the 5th Commandment: “Honor thy father and thy mother.”  Each track on the album is titled this way, named after a commandment. Is this some type of “religious rap” or is Ethos being metaphoric? The actual definition of “ethos” is “the characteristic spirit of a culture, era, or community as manifested in its beliefs and aspirations.” Judging from such a moniker and from statements he’s made in interviews, it seems his goal is more about making observations, rather than instructing us that “thou shalt not whatever.” It’s a more provocative approach. The song is a funk-bassline over an electronic beat and soft synths. Meanwhile Ethos ’ voice is anything but soft as he raps about honoring your

INDEPENDENT SONG RELEASE: Elise Hayes, “Giving Up”

“You never wanted me to get that tattoo,” sings Nashville recording artist Elise Hayes . “I’m going to get that tattoo.” This the start to her new single “Giving Up,” (co-written with Johnny Mo ) which is about not giving up, an ode to post-relationship defiance. There is freedom in being your own person again, even if you were the one dumped. The music itself is a tapestry of sorts: sonic styles patchworked together into a compact yet pleasing mix. Pounding drums and sitar give way to softer guitar, then back to drums, which sometimes beat rapidly as a door knock. A wake up call. The song often stops and starts as if her thoughts are coming to her in jagged fits as she’s singing them. “You never wanted me to have that haircut / Well, now I do…”   It’s a hard style to pull off but Hayes does it effortlessly. She is a strong singer/songwriter, doubtlessly helped in her confidence from being featured in TV shows, such as “Grey’s Anatomy,” MTV ’s “Siesta Key,” and other

INDEPENDENT SONG RELEASE: Micheal Bruner, "Midst of a Mistake"

By Michael Bruner Getting tendinitis was surely a setback, but it also proved to be a positive constraint, an evolution in my approach to music. Instead of contorting my hand into a tense, fleshy spider, I did what felt best: Forcing my head and body to meet halfway. I kept writing. I finished the song “Midst of a Mistake,” inspired by a thieving taxi driver in China. I wanted to start producing this song, but I knew the audio production and editing would prove too strenuous to pull off single-handedly.  Just a few weeks after returning from China, I received a message from Rodrigo Cotelo. I’d met him at the first installment of a house show I performed at (shortly after the onset of my tendinitis). He accompanied a handful of talented Jacob’s students who had backed me up on a set of my original songs. I knew Rod and I would click with each other from the moment I found him sitting at a table, pouring a gourd of yerba maté. Rod’s lively spirit, carefree attitude, and co