premiere: m.t. hadley, 'janet'

A bet for catharsis from M. T. Hadley.

by Matthew Whitehouse and i-D Staff
16 June 2016, 2:15pm

We get sent a lot of songs here at i-D. A lot of them are good, some of them aren't very good. Occasionally, though, we're sent a drop-everything kind of track; a song that fills your mind and swallows you up — this is one of them. It was sent over late last night by a singer called M. T. Hadley. We'd heard a song of his before — last year's "Funes" —and liked it. He does a fine-line in half-falsetto, synth-pop and on his latest release, "Janet," directly confronts the grief of losing his mother to cancer. 

"It's a track I began writing a year after her death — once I felt ready," he describes. "It was completed earlier this month, and I release it today — three years since she died — hoping it will serve to both honor her memory and grant me some catharsis." It feels strange to over-analyze a song like this, but all we really want to say is that in its mournful sparsity, "Janet" manages to describe the feeling of love and loss without once feeling mawkish; a glorious bum chord in the middle eight more emotive than a thousand right ones ever could be. "Through music I am able to express things too difficult to say, and sing things too trite to say aloud," he describes. "Janet" is an optimistic celebration: "the unseen procession of a brass band, quietly led by me." Press play below.



Photo Eloise Parry

martin. t. hadley