by the partae

Photo by Taylor Mansfield

“One of my favourite new artists”
Arlo Parks

“Modern rock anthems…’Porcupine’ is a breakthrough moment”
Pigeons & Planes

“Her songs are rich, accomplished and instantly relatable”
Introducing Aotearoa / New Zealand via London singer songwriter Molly Payton who today shares new single and video ‘Honey’, her first music of 2021.

The London-based 19-year-old is currently in her homeland of New Zealand, where she completed the track remotely with her frequent collaborator Oli Barton-Wood (Nilüfer Yanya, Porridge Radio, Sorry), as well as Grammy-award winning producer Jimmy Hogarth (Sia, Amy Winehouse) and British songwriter Benjamin Francis Leftwich. ‘Honey’ follows Payton’s breakout EP Porcupine, released last Autumn to wide critical acclaim, which led to her being flagged as one to watch by the likes of Pigeons & Planes, Dork, The Line of Best Fit, Steve Lamacq at 6Music and Jack Saunders at BBC Radio 1. It also caught the ears of fellow artists, including Arlo Parks, who chose Payton to appear alongside her takeover of Spotify’s ‘Our Generation’ playlist, commenting of Payton’s music “there was just this sense of rawness and earnestness that really reminded me of things that I’ve lived myself.”

Where Porcupine celebrated the freedom and chaos of Payton’s young adulthood, navigating her new city of London in her first year after high school, the introspective tone of ‘Honey’ hints at a coming of age. In her words; “Honey is about that moment in a relationship where things stop working as well as they used to. This song was me taking responsibility for my part in the decay of it all, acknowledging that I’d been distant and that I’d keep trying to make things work. I think there’s also an undercurrent of frustration with myself for letting my past interfere with my present. Like most songs I write it was mostly just me working through my own mind and emotions, but I guess the message of this song would be to make sure you’re not giving too much of yourself away. Take time to make sure you’re ok so that you can support the people you love.”

The thematic shift is one that mirrors Payton’s return to her roots. Originally intended to be a short stay, her time in New Zealand was extended as UK lockdowns prevailed. As well as spending time with the friends and places she left as a teenager, it also fuelled her resolution to reconnect with the memories and tribulations of her past, and process them through her songwriting. Revolving around  the adage of looking back in order to move forward, she describes her coming output as “honest, reflective and hopeful.” Her time back home also allowed her to rediscover the catharsis of playing live, with Payton performing a series of full-capacity headline gigs against the backdrop of New Zealand’s low Covid rates and eased restrictions.

Molly Payton’s first offering came in the form of her debut EP Mess, which was co-produced with Oscar Lang (Dirty Hit), who she met at her new school soon after relocating to the UK at age 16. This was followed up by 2020’s Porcupine, which saw her strike up a new songwriting partnership with producer Oli Barton-Wood, embracing a fuller sound, a direct reflection of her contemporary experiences in London and changing tastes. Praised for her evocative lyricism and evolved songwriting, ‘Honey’ doesn’t compromise any of Payton’s edge, yet offers a more personal look into the workings of the young songwriter, and forecasts bright things for Molly this year.

Honey‘ is out now, buy/stream it here.

Stay connected with Molly Payton:
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