Yola Previews New Album ‘Stand for Myself’ With ‘Diamond Studded Shoes’ [LISTEN]
Yola will release her sophomore album this summer. Stand for Myself reunites the British singer-songwriter with Black Keys member and producer Dan Auerbach and his Easy Eye Sound label.
A press release teases that Stand for Myself will find Yola making "a sonic shift" from her debut album, 2019's Walk Through Fire. Indeed, the first song released from the record, "Diamond Studded Shoes," is big and bright, with a bit of '60s/'70s pop and soul influence.
"Everybody's saying / That it's gonna be alright / But I can't help but wonder / If it's gonna be on my dime," Yola sings, combatting optimism with realism: "We know it isn't, we know it isn't / We know it isn't, ain't gonna turn out right ... That's why we gots to fight," she professes in each chorus.
Yola introduced "Diamond Studded Shoes" on Thursday (April 22) with a music video directed by Kwaku Otchere. The singer says the clip was inspired by The Truman Show, a 1998 movie in which the main character, Truman Burbank (Jim Carrey), does not know his entire life has been a television show.
"[It's] about being trapped in a false construct. It is supposedly perfect, but you're trapped in a life that wasn’t meant for you," Yola says of the music video in the press release. "I wanted to convey the feeling that everything you know to be true is not quite working the way it’s supposed to."
"This song explores the false divides created to distract us from those few who are in charge of the majority of the world’s wealth and use the ‘divide and conquer’ tactic to keep it," Yola adds of her new track in the release. "This song calls on us to unite and turn our focus to those with a stranglehold on humanity."
For Stand for Myself, Yola co-wrote with, among others, Natalie Hemby, Aaron Lee Tasjan, Liz Rose and Ruby Amanfu. Sonically, the album leans into '70s music, '90s neo-soul, R&B and Britpop, per the press release.
“It’s a collection of stories of allyship, Black feminine strength through vulnerability and loving connection from the sexual to the social -- all celebrating a change in thinking and paradigm shift at their core," Yola shares. "It is an album not blindly positive, and it does not simply plead for everyone to come together. It instead explores ways that we need to stand for ourselves throughout our lives, what limits our connection as humans, and declares that real change will come when we challenge our thinking and acknowledge our true complexity."
Stand for Myself is due out on July 30 and available for pre-order and to pre-save now. Full album details are below.
Yola, Stand for Myself Tracklist:
1. "Barely Alive"
2. "Dancing Away in Tears"
3. "Diamond Studded Shoes"
4. "Be My Friend"
5. "Great Divide"
7. "If I Had to Do It All Again"
8. "Now You’re Here"
9. "Whatever You Want"
10. "Break the Bough"
11. "Like a Photograph"
12. "Stand for Myself"
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