MØ deserves your respect. Not for lofty reasons to do with Art – though, let’s be clear, the Danish artist's debut album No Mythologies to Follow was a wonderful offering of weird and playful pop. Musically, she's much more than 'the one on those Major Lazer songs.' But she earns a few pats on the back because she’s just shared loads of photos of herself from that wonky time during adolescence when all your features seem to be growing at different rates, leaving you looking more like a cartoon rendition of a small adult than a regular person.
Her lyric video for new track “Nostalgia” is essentially a picture slideshow of her life, from her time as a baby to early teendom. The song itself revolves around its titular concept: reflecting on her youth. It does so by zooming in on the minutiae of her first love, elevating it beyond one of many moments in our lives that can seem to flash by so quickly that they never lodge themselves in our minds. Like, can you remember what every day in school was like when you were about seven? Doesn’t it all turn into a repetitive blur of lessons and lunch breaks and whatever after-school activity your parents insisted on so that you'd burn off your excess energy because ADD diagnoses weren't really widespread then (or is that just me)? Anyway, the "firsts" tend to be the things that we bother to store in our knackered brains. Everything else: mush.
So MØ pairs memories of those pivotal moments – first love, the first time she was caught drinking underage – with pounding, club-pop production to make "Nostalgia" sound even more bittersweet. On its surface, the track veers toward tropical pop signifiers, with its dancehall rhythm, funk-lite electric guitars and the brrrrrat-a-tat-tat of a syncopated rawhide drum. But beneath that sunny-sounding exterior it's all about the sensation in your chest when you look back on a lost love and know you'll never have that person again.
MØ being MØ, it still ends with an overall positive feeling, as she sings about how "the sun shines when the cloud breaks." That, it itself, is probably a perfect analogy for the awkwardness of puberty. Sure, you look a bit weird right now and your body makes no sense, but in a few years you'll most likely have glowed the fuck up or be in a good enough place as a person that your physical appearance won't matter much. Either way, raise a glass to MØ's over-plucked tadpole teen brows (most women of a similar age will remember this phase) and her openness about sharing them with us.
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This article originally appeared on Noisey UK.