7 Jun, 2024

Raye Unveils Deeply Personal New Single "Genesis"

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Raye Unveils Deeply Personal New Single "Genesis"

Multi-BRIT Award-winning singer-songwriter Raye has just dropped her expansive and intimate new single, "Genesis". The track was previewed live earlier this week at a special pop-up exhibition in New York City, where Raye expressed her immense pride in the final product.

Today (June 7), the studio version of the ambitious seven-minute song has been released. This marks Raye’s first new material since her critically acclaimed and Mercury Prize-nominated debut album, "My 21st Century Blues", which was released in 2023.

Raye shared her inspiration behind "Genesis" in a recent statement: “There is a Nina Simone quote, ‘It is an artist’s duty to reflect the times’. This quote resonates deeply with me, and I believe the best way I can honor it is through my art and music.”

Reflecting on the current state of the world, she continued, “There is so much darkness and pain around us, and I wanted to create something as personal and raw as I could, both about my own mind and the world I see around me.”

Describing the song’s creation, Raye explained, “The song is a seven-minute piece that I have crafted and scrutinised over the last year and a half, experimenting with different genres and sonic expressions, beneath all the layers and the lyrics, the underlying message is ‘Let There Be Light’.

She added, “It is a prayer and a plea and a cry for help, and I really hope this song will be able to bring some hope, the way this music does for me, to those who need it most.”

The first part of "Genesis" features gospel-inspired tones, with Raye singing about her journey of sobriety and battling inner demons. The lyrics touch on her struggles, stating, “I’ve been sober for some months, but I can feel the demons waiting on my downfall.”

As the song progresses, it incorporates elements of jazz, hip-hop, and R&B. The dramatic second part is highlighted by a powerful brass section, with Raye addressing issues like “fake democracy,” war, and “government lies.” At one point, she starkly states, “Bang-bang, that’s depression at the door again.”

In the final part of the song, Raye repeatedly chants “let there be light” over a jazzy big band instrumental, paying tribute to healthcare workers and advocating for better pay with lines like, “The nurses and the doctors, God bless the NHS. Let the pay rise, let the pay rise up.”

Recently, Raye, who has consistently advocated for songwriter rights, received the prestigious Ivor Novello Award for Songwriter of the Year. At the 2024 BRIT Awards, the singer made history by becoming the first artist ever to win six awards in one night.

Photo: SAMIR HUSSEIN//GETTY IMAGES

Source: NME

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