Nilüfer Yanya’s music has always been ruled by weirdness. Melting together jazz, pop and soul over delicious idiosyncracies in both vocal style and guitar playing, the Londoner’s sound has developed gorgeously across a handful of EPs and buzz-building singles, all swerving convention and tradition. Last song ‘Heavyweight Champion Of The Year’, released towards the end of 2018, showed this best, with stabs of dulled guitar popping out in an unusual, unexpected rhythm.
The singer has now returned with details of her debut album ‘Miss Universe’, and marked the occasion with the release of her first hit; new song ‘In Your Head’ is a euphoric, shattering pop song. While Nilüfer’s music has always skirted around the sweet spot and used evasiveness as its greatest weapon, ‘In Your Head’ barrels straight into a hugely catchy chorus.
A live favourite for a good while now, the song has always been a standout of the singer’s sets, and sounds even more massive on record. All her weirdness is still present here - the sharp guitar line in its verse is far from traditional, and her voice jumps between ranges with grace and style - but with the track’s chorus, a straight-forward rush of guitars, drums and a soaring vocal line, she breaks through to another plain, proving herself just as adept at penning a radio-bound pop-rock banger as she is with the unusual guitar music we know her for. It’s an absolute delight.
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