When Detroit-born Tasmania-resident Amber Rae Slade released her album With a Bullet Between My Teeth in 2020 (recently reissued by Heartland Music Australia), I wrote then that ‘Slade has a voice that is earthy and edgy, passionate and knowing. By subtly shifting tone she can implore or dictate or confide, and thereby indicates that she is giving us a panoply of experiences in these songs.’
In Slade’s new single ‘Everything’s More Beautiful Because We’re Doomed’ – which is having its online premiere here today – it’s reasonable to say she is giving us a range of experiences within the one song. This is not because the song is trying to be many things but, rather, because it encompasses – and Slade embodies – so much of life and its paradoxes within it.
Says Slade of the song: ‘When I’d initially written it, it was a song about what it meant to be a woman or identify as a woman in America, and far elsewhere I’m certain. Both historically and contemporarily and through my own experiences and observations. It was a bit of a cryptic love song to those who endeavour to understand and support women without flinching.
‘The longer it’s stayed with me though, and particularly through the breakdown of my marriage, I can see that what I was really writing about. IN BLATANT ALLEGORY. Probably best explained as the five stages of mourning; denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance … That last part, most of all.’
‘Everything’s More Beautiful Because We’re Doomed’ is part battle cry, part hymn in that it evokes an offering to the listener: of love, of service, of reality. Since her earliest releases Slade has always sounded like she is communicating directly to the listener, that she is right up close to us. It is comforting and it can be unsettling – the title of this song alone suggests that – because she seems to know so much. Except it also feels reassuring, because she’s in it with us, reminding us that there is beauty in the ruins if we set out to find it – and she may just help us do that.