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  • Andy Mockbee

Review: "Instinctual" - Lou Emery

One inescapable truth of young adulthood is that fun is never quite as meaningless as we’d like others to believe. Combine total freedom with a particularly tumultuous time of life and you have a recipe for self-medication. On the lead single for her debut EP, Lou Emery battles with this over an ear-worm disco groove holding more beneath the surface than at first glance. Emery’s voice soars over glittering synths, sweet bass chords, and luminescent strings. As the song provides the perfect soundtrack to any night out dancing, the singer-songwriter paints an authentic and complex picture of that experience.

The song centers around a fling with an anonymous man at the club, but more accurately, it portrays the charade-like quality of self-medicating fun. From the start, Emery spins meaning to be more appealing: “I’ll regret you in the morning, this I know / So catch it while you can.” Regret becomes a playful challenge to her partner rather than a deterrent. While adamant that this is nothing more than fun, she finds herself sprinkling in allusions to something deeper. The unnamed man is briefly referred to as “just the remedy,” and while she keeps the symptom close to her chest, it ultimately is revealed at the bridge: “Oh, I could use you / ‘Cause my head’s been full of him again.” It’s a highlight moment of the track as Emery’s vocal chops are on full display. Considering this isn’t her first time being plagued by memories of a former love, it also becomes clear that neither is it her first time resorting to the dance floor as a coping mechanism. “Try to remember how to work you right / Feeling like a beggar in the bar light” is contextualized as Emery reveals the transactional relationship she has with these moments. While she may be insistent that this is merely instinctual—there is clearly a lot more going on in her head.

Lou Emery is an LA-based, 23-year-old singer-songwriter. Previously her music was released under the name, Lauren Kunkel. Instinctual is the first single teasing towards her yet unnamed debut EP set to be released later this year. Her pop production is blended with arrangements optimized for live performance, making her music ideal for any listening experience.

Written By Andy Mockbee



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