In the lead-up to her second album, Charlie Collins exorcises her heartbreak and has never sounded brighter.
In a shimmer of guitar and a fuzzy drumbeat, “Backseat Valentine” bursts into life. From Sydney to London, Charlie Collins has come on a physical journey as much as an emotional one as she approaches the release of Undone, and it makes for a boundless sound. She’s built her career so far in Australia, with debut album Snowpine collecting awards and support slots for the likes of Sam Fender – but “Backseat Valentine” is the sound of Collins breaking new ground. Literally.
Simultaneously sunny and intense the track is a twinkling supernova of heartbreak that acknowledges the devastation as well as the anger packed into the feeling but delivered in a sparkly box fit for a singalong. As with any good anthem to lost love, “Backseat Valentine” is ridiculously loopable for long days and nights of intense feeling, taking the light with the dark.
Written and recorded in one take in just an hour, the track that we hear on record is as raw as it comes, coming straight from Collins’s heart to our ears. “I’ve never written a song like that ever,” she says. “It's embracing, the real fucking wild side of me, I love to go crazy and do spontaneous things sometimes.”
It's a tonic to the previous single "November", which is pure piano devastation. The rest of what we’ve heard before start to fill in the rest of the emotional puzzle pieces, across the spectrum of moody (title track “Undone”) to sparkling I-don’t-care bite “Fuck It, Just My Luck”.
The path that traces Collins’ road to Undone is fitting of its thematic internal exploration. “As the story often goes, a broken relationship sparked a desire to be somewhere new and somewhere exciting,” she explains. “I realised I needed to do something for myself to help my heart heal. In a matter of days, I packed my bags and bought a ticket to London.”
“After being here for over a month travelling, exploring, writing and discovering myself I got asked to support Gang Of Youths on their UK tour! Naturally, my answer was fuck yes! I extended my trip without any hesitation. I’ve known the boys for over 10 years and my first ever solo show was supporting them so to have the opportunity to do it all again with my dear friends was so special and exciting! Can’t wait to share my songs with just me and my guitar to the UK folk then back home for shows with my full band.”