Hayley Mary

Hayley Mary has graced us with a surprise five-track EP, ‘Fall In Love’, and the title track is her catchiest single yet.

Co-produced by Hayley and Oscar Dawson (Holy Holy) during Melbourne’s most recent lockdown, ‘Fall In Love’ (the single) is a dirty Motown-esque love song with contemporary lyricism. A triumphantly uplifting tune that is undeniable to anyone who has ever wanted to fall in love.

On the track, Hayley says, “I wanted to write a really straight-up feel-good love song about breaking up and making up. A couple of mates of mine were both newly single and I could tell they wanted to fall in love with each other a little bit, even if it wasn’t particularly wise. I found it cute so I wrote a song about it. Guess it’s just something anyone can relate to really. Who hasn’t been lonely and wanted to dive in and fall in love?”

The other four EP tracks, gifted to us today, were produced at The Grove by Scott Horscroft and Johnny Took of DMA’S. Sonically it continues the neo-wall-of-sound Mary has become known for since transitioning from front-woman of The Jezabels to fully-fledged solo artist. What differentiates the solo project is how she has developed her voice to be more vulnerable and, perhaps, more herself.

Her debut ‘The Piss, The Perfume’ and the anthemic follow up, ‘Like A Woman Should’ (which has boomed in popularity through the recent TV series ‘Maid’) earned radio love, critical acclaim, and festival offers, including the UK’s Great Escape. As the entire live music industry was thwarted, Hayley continued the momentum by bringing us her sophomore EP, The Drip in June 2021, featuring triple j fave ‘Would You Throw A Diamond?’.

The new EP comes with a sense of slightly old-fashioned, feminine romanticism which feels self-aware and purposeful on ‘Fall In Love’. The other love song on the EP, ‘Bullet’ is a summer roadtrip playlister. Mid-tempo ballad ‘T.E.A.R’ weaves between an ode to a rockstar and an obituary to an outcast father figure. The two are “perhaps interchangeable in the mind of a little girl,” says Mary. Her earnest childlike admiration for its flawed hero is heartbreakingly pure.

Fall In Love is certainly not all rosy vulnerability, Mary still has bite and an aptitude for social commentary. EP closer ‘27’ could be read as a stab at the homogenising forces within the music industry. Or a topical and timely criticism of a metro-centric, ageist culture. On the other hand ‘The Young’, a jangly Australiana tune, seems to be equally critical of the small-mindedness that can fester in a small town, leaving Hayley Mary’s third EP, like the artist herself, and, like most good music: full of contradictions.

Fall In Love is just the thoughtful blend of emotion you want in an EP; to lift your spirits and bring in the summer of freedom. It’s also a testament to an artist’s persistence; a giant rude finger to this decade’s obstacles. If you haven’t already, this EP will make you ‘Fall In Love’ with Hayley Mary.