It’s about time you met JONES. After blazing a trail with the mellow pop of ‘Deep’ and the AK Paul-produced ‘You’ in 2014, the singer-songwriter steps into the light this month with her debut EP, Indulge.
Raised in east London on Stevie and Luther by her soul-loving Mum, at an early age JONES began to turn her most private diary entries into songs, and her small shows for family members became tentative open mic sessions.
Over the past couple of years, she’s been gradually letting others into the world she’s created; namely, XL’s resident producer Rodaidh McDonald, multi-faceted Ninja Tune artist Raffertie, newcomers Brunelle and alt-pop mastermind (and brother of Jai) A. K. Paul. Together with these collaborators she blends polished electronic sounds with raw, organic elements, echoing her modern musical loves, Little Dragon and Lykke Li.
While on the surface these songs all have a soft romantic touch, JONES writes about love and life from the perspective of a tough-skinned outsider. ‘80s-esque dream-pop tune ‘Deep,’ she explains, despite its bubbling rhythm, is actually about people who are in a vicious cycle” in their relationships. “It’s about my frustration at wanting to help them, but realising that you can never change a person”.
Meanwhile ‘You,’ which sees her vocal tip-toe over A. K. Paul’s sparse synth work, might feel colder, but is actually an ode to self-love written for her beloved Mum.
EP opener ‘Indulge’ is the most ecstatic love song from the bunch, but between the subdued guitar licks and catchy chorus lies a sharp-edged message about the tricky power (im)balances of love:
“I’m in danger, but I savour the thrill of you.”
The way JONES describes herself is as a detached, lone wanderer, who admits making music is a form of “creative meditation” for her that fits alongside her regular practice. There’s a distinct sense that for her - the contemplative person who likes to stay at home writing or spend time people-watching in cafes - music is a chance to flesh out a whole new persona. So who is JONES?
“JONES is a curious person, just searching the world and finding everything interesting,” she says. “An observer.”