Empress Eyes – “Stay Dead”

Album art by Arie Antonakis and Jake Serra

“Stay Dead” is a powerful new single from Empress Eyes, a Grand Rapids-based project led by the captivating songwriting of Clare. The track enthralls with a biting, relatable lyrical narrative and haunting accompanying instrumentation — propelled by emotive viola, atmospheric synths, and anthemic rhythmic rises. The stirring lyrics emit a sense of betrayal and heartbreak, along with a yearning to move past one’s toxicity and ultimately heal.

The effort culminates in a cathartic line: “Fuck you. I don’t have shit to lose, and I don’t have shit to prove.” This follows the annoyance of “neighbors” who have been “asking where you’ve been,” — punctuated by the rousing, visceral declaration: “To be honest man, I wish you’d just stay dead.” The track resonates in conveying pent-up animosity, driven by a long period of tumult. “Stay Dead” is a powerful success from Empress Eyes, which initially formed as Clare’s solo project in 2019, and was joined by the rest of the band in June 2023. A solo debut album, Sitting In My Room, released last fall.

This and other tracks featured this month can be streamed on the updating Obscure Sound’s ‘Best of October 2023’ Spotify playlist.

Mike Mineo

I'm the founder/editor of Obscure Sound, which was formed in 2006. Previously, I wrote for PopMatters and Stylus Magazine.

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