My Mind Wanders and Sometimes Leaves Completely
Where previous releases have seen Lola interrogating her life with honesty, 'My Mind Wanders And Sometimes Leaves Completely' is a new era for the young singer-songwriter.
Love is a theme she’ll always tackle in her music, she says – “it’s the most relatable topic, isn't it?” – but on this project she’s fully stepped out of her comfort zone, testing her writing ability to confront new topics, while mining new depths of her creativity. On My Mind Wanders And Sometimes Leaves Completely, Lola set out with the idea that no one is two-dimensional, or perfect. Armed with that vocal that switches between soft and strong at a moment’s notice, Lola uses a folk storytelling and diaristic style to offer the listener a front seat to immersive snapshots of her life. “It’s my journey towards being a woman and figuring out who I am,” she says. “There’s a lot of references to people telling me I won’t make it [in the music industry]. It’s almost me talking to myself, addressing the difficulties you go through growing up, your insecurities.”
Dealing with themes such as love bombing, gaslighting, body image and depression among others, it’s a relatable listen for any young person growing up today. It’s peppered with vivid details, like her ex buying her a record to play on her birthday – “don’t even listen to punk, do you know me?” she sings on “Semantic Situation”), and someone saying she needed to read a book titled How To Be Happy, “and I think that was a bit of a dig” (“Revolve Around You”). “Pretty In Pink” is her “talking about the way that I hate life through love,” she says. “Like I'm falling out of love with life, but I can't help it, it's not about you, it's just about the way I'm feeling about the world, but in more of an existential way.” It’s a piano-led ballad in the time signature of 7/4, “which makes you nod your head in a weird way, it’s a bit Radiohead-y,” she says. “When we do it with a band, the drummer can never get it right!”
While ballads are undoubtedly her thing, there’s a distinctly London edge to Lola’s music, bolstered by her love of old hip hop and UK rap. She’s not averse to a crossover, too: she collaborated with Arrdee on his “Who Woulda Thought” track, and has brought that inner-city edge to the new project which has “a house party feel,” she says. “Money Won’t Wake”, a track written about a “super rich kid” who spends their money in the wrong way, “crushing pills on leather seats” has a broken, head-nodding hip hop beat. With its hazy, stumbling feel and Mike Skinner-style syntax, “Stream of Consciousness” does exactly what the title suggests: it’s a direct look into Lola’s headspace.