Hop Along’s Frances Quinlan needs no introduction. Quinlan’s distinct, vociferous voice is responsible for some of the decade’s greatest songs. Though Hop Along was originally Quinlan’s solo project, today she releases music under her own name for the very first time.
‘Rare Thing’, taken from forthcoming solo record ‘Likeness’, is as good of sign as any that Quinlan does not care for your expectations. Dropping the post-punk sound Hop Along are famed for, Quinlan fuses jazz and electronica on this genre-defying track. Written about a tumultuous dream about her then-infant niece, ‘Rare Thing’ imitates the non-sensical, confusing nature of dreams in its formless improv. Just as you think you understand its direction, ‘Rare Thing’ shifts dramatically into another form. What is recognisable though is Quinlan’s penchant for empathy, “I know there is love that / Doesn’t have to do with / taking something from somebody” she sings, putting forward a new definition of love. If ‘Rare Thing’ is a hint of what’s to come on ‘Likeness’, then it’s sure to be inimitable and distinct. Just like Quinlan herself.
Likeness is out January 31 on Saddle Creek