Single Review: Miss Leading – Woke

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New Zealand born electro artist Miss Leading has released her emotive new video for single, Woke. Socially conscious and lyric-heavy, the track explores themes of hypocrisy running through society particularly around the rise of the Black Lives Matter movement.

Miss Leading is a multi-talented performer seamlessly turning her hand to songwriting, producing and poetry. While born in New Zealand, the artist is of Indian and Scottish heritage and spent five years in her adopted homeland of Scotland prior to the pandemic. Having to return due to the spread of the virus, Miss Leading set about creating her debut album, Minor Things.

Woke is one of the standout tracks on the record and the video is truly poignant. The song itself uses lots of space accented by programmed electro beats allowing Miss Leading’s soft vocals to shine. The beauty is in the lyricism, with lines such as, ‘So you woke now, been asleep for years, you see em choke now, deluge of white tears like it just broke. Same system always there, fire was stoaked. Long before you cared.’.

Set in an isolated white room, Miss Leading proceeds to cut her own hair as the video proceeds. Talking about the symbolism Miss Leading commented it is that of “‘a thousand tiny cuts’, that accumulation of constant prejudice and its impact. It is also about pulling back the nice dressing to reveal something that makes people uncomfortable.”

Woke is an affecting piece of music elevated by a moving video. Experimental by nature Miss Leading evokes memories of the haunting vulnerability of FKA twigs combined with the left-field work of Björk. Since returning to New Zealand, Nadia has founded the Eastern Sound Collective a network of Wellington musicians who aim to support Asian artists who are underrepresented in western music.Miss Leading will be in the UK in June, July and August and will be aiming to perform live in her adopted home as well as throughout the country.

Woke is out now.

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