The track itself channels dark, alternative-pop sensibilities of The Cardigans with expansive electro tones and spacious synth-guitar vibes. It is a heartfelt ode about yearning for human connection during the pandemic and assessing our priorities.
Laura explains, “’Black Car’ is a song about love and death, guilt and gratitude, taking time to figure out what's most important, feeling desperately sad and isolated and grieving the loss of so many. Dealing with anger and frustration at the UK government for making so many missteps. Trying to keep on keeping on, while finding it hard to see a way out of this, however many “roadmaps” are announced. Accepting - and feeling - our feelings.
“That this single release marks the first anniversary of the first UK lockdown is an accident, but sometimes things just fall into place like that when we focus on what’s important to us. Throughout this loneliest of years, I’ve tried to keep connected to humanity through making and releasing new music, podcast episodes and my weekly emails, doing what I can to create pinpoints of light in dark times. With all the gratitude in the world, I have to remind myself it’s still ok to feel wounded by what’s been going on and to feel scared about what’s to come. We will all be changed by this experience, and at the root of everything is the love we have for others.”
It follows the release of her recent single ‘Cancel Your Hopes’, which is which is an eerie, upbeat alt-rock anthem, and is a starkly honest commentary on the world we’re living in and trying to navigate as best we can.
The album builds on Kidd's accomplished ear for melody and ambitious production style, marrying disparate influences from Tanya Donelly, Juliana Hatfield and Nevermind-era Nirvana to the gritty tension of Nine Inch Nails and Puscifer and synth soundscapes of Depeche Mode, Tears For Fears and Sylvan Esso.
Written and recorded in solitary confinement during the drawn-out, tumultuous Brexit
nightmare and well on into the Covid-19 pandemic, Exotic Monsters mirrors our dystopian world, posing questions and offering comfort, hope and a friendly shoulder
to lean on.
Drawing more from her wide-ranging reading list than her favourite bands, Laura deals with the gruelling emotional matters of 21st-century life with honesty, grace and warmth, referencing Ursula Le Guin, Barbara Kingsolver, Kurt Vonnegut, Margaret Atwood and Mark Westmoquette along the way.
The announcement of Exotic Monsters followed the release of the title track earlier this year, which comes with the brilliant and unsettling video, which premiered with Clash who called the track “a wonderfully off piste pop song,” whilst Classic Pop hailed it “…[a] moody slice of synth-pop.”
It follows 2020’s release of the sincere and hopeful ‘The Only Way Out Is Through’ and ‘Everything Looks Normal In The Sunshine’, which is an explosive sugary pop banger that recalls the heady strut of Dream Wife and Dinosaur Pile Up whilst nodding quietly to the Blue Album-era of Weezer.
Laura is also behind the Attention Engineer podcast, which aims to address how in a noisy online world, the gift of someone’s attention is priceless. In each episode she has deep conversations with artists she admires about how they balance online and offline life, tour and family, creative introspection and happiness.
It has had acclaim from the Guardian stating that Kidd, “talks with insight and warmth to (mostly) other musicians.” Guests so far have included Tanya Donelly (Belly), Frank Turner, Rebecca Lucy Taylor (Self Esteem), Corin Tucker (Sleater Kinney), J Wilgoose Esq (Public Service Broadcasting) and Lemn Sissay MBE, Liz Stokes (The Beths) and many more and shot to #10 in the Apple Podcasts top music shows in the first three days.