“The things that I did to you, you would never do to me,” sings MUNA lead vocalist Katie Gavin in a brave moment of honest self-reflection on the LA-based outfit’s new single, “Promise.” The stunning track follows the band’s recent breakout, “So Special,” which boasted a similar lyrical masochism, where Gavin nearly beats herself up about the way she dangerously copes with love.
“Don’t wanna look at you now; bruised and broken down by what you thought was love; you tell me you wanna stay and you wanna watch me change; but I’m scared, so I tell you to fuck off,” Gavin sings before slipping into the inquisitive hook, which repeatedly asks, “Why do I do it?”
While written in a dark period of helplessness, “Promise” is magical in the way its melody soars with intimate optimism. It’s four minutes of hard-hitting pop, packed with bright guitars, punchy ’80s synthesizers and thumping production evocative of M83. MUNA thus far has held absolutely nothing back, which is a refreshing approach to music-making in an industry often sodden with empty bullshit.