British indie-pop band Pale Waves have released their newest unapologetic single “You Don’t Own Me,” the fourth single from their anticipated sophomore album Who Am I? – out February 12, 2021, via Dirty Hit. PRESS HERE to to listen to the empowering, guitar-heavy release of frustration which sees frontwoman Heather Baron-Gracie push against misogyny to defend her own individuality and the individuality of others.
“‘You Don’t Own Me’ is a song for women about what it’s like to be a woman in this world. How society depicts, judges, and criticizes women on a daily basis,” says Heather. “This song is incredibly important to me and I wanted to represent my own experiences. I also wanted to say a f*ck you to everyone that plays by these fake, delusional rules that say women and gender need to fit inside a specific box.”
Flipping the Pale Waves world upside-down, Who Am I?’s singles draw strength from vulnerability to usher in a new acoustic-guitar-laden alternative pop rock energy. Pale Waves’ previous single “Easy” is an uplifting, shimmering pop anthem about being in love with being in love and how transformative the experience can be, while “She’s My Religion,” which premiered worldwide on Zane Lowe’s New Music Daily on Apple Music 1, serves as an atypical love letter which sees Heather embracing her sexuality to represent a queer relationship without hiding behind the clichés of oversexualization or playful experimentation. Retro guitar track “Change” is made up of stories of heartbreak from Heather’s friends and was first played as Annie Mac’s Hottest Record In The World on BBC Radio 1. The collection has already garnered praise from various top tier media outlets.
Who Am I? – the coming-of-age follow-up to the band’s 2018 debut albumMy Mind Makes Noises which amassed over 70 million streams worldwide – opens up a bold new chapter for Pale Waves. Confidently creating a safe space for people to be themselves, Heather’s songwriting holds the last few years of her life up to the light, reflecting on her own mental health and growing pains – depression, distraction, and feelings of darkness – but also her experience of falling in love and becoming more open about her sexuality, emerging with a newfound clarity and optimism.
Who Am I? acts as the Pale Waves manifesto, inspiring inclusivity, self-discovery, and the notion of being whoever the hell you want to be. On the making of the album, Heather says “for me, music and art is for people not to feel so alone and isolated. I want to be that person my fans look up to and find comfort in.”
Who Am I? was recorded primarily in Los Angeles alongside producer Rich Costey (Muse, Foo Fighters, Sigur Rós), before the Coronavirus lockdown forced the making of the album to go virtual, with Heather remaining in LA and the rest of the band returning home to record their parts in their bedrooms, sending them back to LA to be added into the record.
Pale Waves – comprised of front woman Heather Baron-Gracie (she/her); drummer Ciara Doran (they/them); guitarist Huge Silvani (he/him) and bassist Charlie Wood (he/him) – made an immediate splash when the debuted on the music scene a few year ago, hitting the Top 10 on UK Album Chart, winning the NME Under The Radar award, making the BBC Sound of 2018 shortlist, touring with fellow Dirty Hit label mates and mentors The 1975 as well as Muse and The Cure, and appearing on Late Night with Seth Meyers. They have performed at Reading, Leeds, Lollapalooza, SXSW, and recently appeared on the cover of Dork Magazine for the third time.