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For the vast majority of her new single, “Alone, Together,” Claire George is well, alone. Backed only by a solitary and melancholic piano for the first two-thirds of the song, the spotlight is on the Los Angeles-based artist, and boy, is it lonely in there. Gone are the warm and upbeat indie-pop synths that enveloped her voice on last year’s Purity Ring-esque Bodies of Water, her debut EP. Now accepting the fallout of a breakup, there’s nothing to hide behind on this stunning ballad, which she echoes in a statement accompanying the single:
“Alone, Together” covers the different seasons in the lifecycle of a failed relationship. The phrase “alone together” shifts meaning over the course of the song, tipping the scale from an expression of obsession and passion to one of hollowness and defeat.
Though she’s been playing the song live for quite some time—our own Adrian Spinelli had this to say of the track at SXSW this year: “I heard a new song from George, not on her dashing debut Bodies of Water EP, that flashed her beautiful voice, showed her most intriguing songwriting to date and had me begging for more recorded material”—she eventually found the “together” aspect of the title in a collaboration with Yumi Zouma’s Josh Burgess, who approached her to record the song earlier this year. The result was the exact opposite of its original intent: “Alone, Together (Forever),” a dance floor-ready pop song that recalls the best of Robyn. Despite featuring the same lyrics, the track sees her find a community in her heartbreak, one that can lift her up one heavy bass hit at a time.
“In our recording session, the song began to take on a different energy than that of the ballad I’d originally written,” George writes. “I thought it would be interesting to create a duality not only within the song, but by releasing two versions of the song to express the two meanings of the phrase.”
That duality is fascinating here, showing that heartache can take on multiple different forms at the same time, be it a show-stopping acoustic number or a synth-pop banger with a thumping bass. Both versions of the song will whet your appetite for more music from Claire George, which is hopefully close on the horizon. Until then, listen to “Alone, Together,” check out her upcoming tour dates and stream the alternate version, “Alone, Together (Forever)” here.
Claire George Tour Dates:
25 – Brooklyn, N.Y. @ Elsewhere Zone One &
11 – Las Vegas, Nev. @ Bunkhouse Saloon $
23 – Los Angeles, Calif. @ Moroccan Lounge ^
26 – San Francisco, Calif. @ The Independent ^
29 – Portland, Ore. @ Bunk Bar ^
30 – Seattle, Wash. @ Barboza ^
11 – San Diego, Calif. @ Soda Bar %
(& – with Moon Diagrams)
($ – with DRAMA)
(^ – with Maiah Manser)
(% – with Kllo)