Feature, News, Reviews

Heartworms Shares New Single & Video “Jacked” Out via Speedy Wunderground

June 13, 2024
Photo credit: Gilbert Trejo

Heartworms

Shares New Single & Video “Jacked”

Out via Speedy Wunderground

South London auteur Heartworms has today returned with brand new single “Jacked” on Speedy Wunderground. The single is the first taste of an upcoming larger project, set to be announced later this year.

The first new music since the release of the formidable single “May I Comply” last year, “Jacked” is a blistering return which explores, as Heartworms explains, “a darkness or entity which you are running away from… but it is really you that holds it.” Produced by Dan Carey, the single combines the propulsive, motorik rhythms of gothic stalwarts Depeche Mode, Killing Joke or New Order, with the lyrical dexterity of PJ Harvey into a powerful sonic onslaught that is entirely Heartworms.

“Jacked” also comes complete with a music video by long-time collaborator and creative Gilbert Trejo, who adds: “To me, “Jacked” is the soundtrack to a paranoid fever dream. There’s a movement and energy to the song that Jojo and I knew we needed to convey when we were writing the video. We wanted her in flight, but she had to be alone in the world, so I went through and scratched everyone else’s face off of the film emulsion with a safety pin. That feeling of loneliness and the unknown. Scary and hilarious.

We figured if I jumped in the van on their US tour and shot it on an old 35mm camera I’d recently built, we could utilize all the free foreign locations. Pulling over if we saw something sick, and time allowed. Then we finished it out with help from (DP) Max Flick and (PD) Frankie Latina at the abandoned zoo in LA after the tour was over.”

This invigorating composition showcases this dramatic brutality in the complex layers that form to deliver the immense structure and lasting atmosphere of the darker creation. The piercing guitar tones loop and add further hypnotic tendencies to the expressive passages and then the vocal harmonies come into focus. Angular and abrasive but above all affecting.

Heartworms create this pure chaos in their vision, dark and cryptic passages enthral this sense of urgency and in turn, agitate the listener to embrace the uncertainty of their world. With the new single, this powerful soundscape causes havoc whilst the vocal harmonies and the range they offer, bring a sense of stability and peace into the voyage despite offering up equally brooding lyrics. As the textures continue to crush the aggressive build-up before Heartworms vocal notes elevate the vision, fusing the abrasive power of the instrumentation and the hypnotic hooks with the standout appeal of the harmonies and the energy that flourishes throughout.

Heartworms’ debut EP A Comforting Notion was subject to critical acclaim from the likes of The Sunday Times, Dazed, The FADER, The Quietus, Loud And Quiet, The Line Of Best Fit, So Young Magazine, and many more. The EPs singles were added to the BBC Radio 6 Music playlist following widespread support across the station, as well as spot plays from Radio X’s John Kennedy, and BBC Radio 1’s Jack Saunders and Gemma Bradley. 

The upcoming shows follow her biggest headline show to date at a sold out Village Underground in November last year, as well as dates in 2024 supporting The Kills in the US, and St Vincent in the UK – including a sold out Royal Albert Hall earlier this month.

With her biggest project yet on the horizon, 2024 is set to be Heartworms’ for the taking.

Backed by a full live band, Heartworms’ performances are a masterclass in poise; she describes the theatre brought to her shows – punctuated by her intense stare – as a kick back against preconceived notions of ‘smallness’ and fragility as a female musician. On stage, her projection is the very antithesis: we see an artist who is big, powerful, in total control.

Uniformity plays a huge role in all things Heartworms, too. The metronomic music and meticulous fashion of bands like Interpol and Kraftwerk greatly inspires her, as does PJ Harvey, whose dark sense of humour permeates her songwriting. The end result is a life affirming exercise, an opportunity to expel her own self and passions; which include military history (she regularly volunteers at The Royal Air Force Museum in Hendon) and the poetry of Pound, Thomas, and Keats.

https://www.instagram.com/iamheartworms

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