UK-based singer-songwriter and YouTuber Emma Blackery has recently released her fifth EP, Magnetised. Since the release of her three-track EP Sucks To Be You in May 2016, avid supporters have been waiting for a new era of Emma Blackery music. Since the official announcement in mid-March, Emma has released three singles from the EP, along with two music videos and one lyric video. On its release day, May 26th, Magnetised climbed to number three on the UK iTunes Album chart, an incredible position to achieve for its first day!
Without further ado, here is our track-by-track review of Emma Blackery’s Magnetised EP. Read to the end to see our thoughts on the EP as a whole!
1. Nothing Without You
First up we have ‘Nothing Without You’, the lead single and music video from the EP. The happiest and most upbeat song on the EP, ‘Nothing Without You’ focuses on leaving both a physical location and a relationship, making reference to the metaphorical shackles binding her to both.
It feels like, as Emma previously stated about the EP as a whole, a “final goodbye” to a relationship. It talks about the ups and downs and the mistakes that were made, but the ultimate takeaway is that Emma will be in a good place because the other person changed her for the better during the course of their relationship. The track features a catchy chorus that highlights the strength in Emma’s vocals. Plus, as Emma demonstrated in the music video, it’s a lovely song to dance along to, and definitely worthy of being classified as a “bop”.
Best Lyric: “And you shaped me into who I wanted to be”
The second track on Magnetised is ‘Fixation’, which talks about being stuck between a friendship and a relationship with someone. It is a slower, dreamier sounding song, the simplicity of the acoustic guitar during the intro of the song contrasting with the fullness and movement of the rest of the track. We imagine this song would sound amazing stripped back or live, although we love the extra harmonies included at the end of certain lines and the gentle “ooohs” after the first verse.
The song speaks of being trapped and “bound to this fixation”, and how the possibility of being with this person in “the perfect world” always seems to be just out of reach. Even though they couldn’t be more different, like ‘Nothing Without You’, ‘Fixation’ makes reference to staying and leaving, and uses physical places as metaphors for stages of a relationship, which we also see later on the EP in ‘Don’t Come Home’.
Best Lyric: “But now my happiness depends on how well I pretend”
Next up is the title track of the EP and the second official single and music video- ‘Magnetised’. The mid-tempo ballad tells the story of a boy leaving Emma for someone else despite them being inexplicably drawn to each other. The echoey production accented by light tinkling piano notes allows for Emma’s powerful vocals to take center stage.
When she first announced the EP, Emma explained the meaning behind the title, saying “love is being magnetised towards someone, against your better judgment, despite their flaws, and resisting the need to pull away from them.” As the title track, this song captures those feelings perfectly, the lyrics speaking of simply being unable to stay away from each other despite the need to move on. The songs and all of its emotions come to a peak at the chill-inducing line: “now look into my eyes and tell me we’re not magnetised”.
Best Lyric: “And now it’s giving me pain / But we must be sadistic”
We first heard ‘Instead’ last year, in the above video that Emma posted to her YouTube channel Vloggery. The version on the EP is similar, keeping the acoustic guitar as the main focus of the instrumentation, with the addition of some gentle strings to carry the song forward. It is a beautiful showcase of Emma’s higher range, her voice soaring powerfully throughout the song, especially during the bridge.
The song discusses the difficulty of watching an ex move on after a breakup but still missing them and wishing to be with them instead. This is arguably the saddest song on the EP, the pain in Emma’s voice especially clear every time she sings “when you should be kissing me instead”. It seems to be loosely based on real events, as Emma has said that “this song is definitely based off of something in my life, but the song is its own story too.”
Best Lyric: “I’d rather you be happy / than make you fall in love with me”
5. Don’t Come Home
The third single from the EP and its recently released lyric video is another song that Emma revisited. She posted a demo of this song on her YouTube channel last year, and the newer version has undergone a few changes. The tempo is faster, and the chorus is much fuller and more powerful, bordering on the pop-punk roots from Emma’s previous EPs. The demo was a fan favourite, and we’re sure listeners will love this revamped version as well.
This song is obviously themed around home, which could also represent the familiarity of a relationship. In the chorus, Emma is convincing her lover that they would be ‘better off alone’ and the pop production almost makes it sound like a breakup song. But then there are softer sections, where the deeper emotion in Emma’s voice seeps through- and it’s where you can tell that despite the entire situation they are still magnetised. No matter how strong and convincing she sounds during the chorus, it still hurts to say ‘don’t come home’, which really captures the concept of being ‘Magnetised’.
Best Lyric: “So tell me why you stay at all / you’d be better off alone”
6. Human Behaviour
Originally the title track of her debut EP, this fresh version of ‘Human Behaviour’ is the perfect song to close out Magnetised, and a is little different from any of the other tracks on the collection. It is a soft and soothing reminder that all of the emotions we feel are natural and what make us human. It seems to act as a consolation for Emma herself as well, a reassurance that the ups and downs on the rest of the EP are “all part of the ride”. It’s one of those songs that almost everyone can learn something from or relate to in some way.
The quiet swell of the strings and the simple guitar and piano melodies give the song a lullaby-esque feel and complement Emma’s softer vocals wonderfully. It’s a hopeful and calm note on which to conclude the EP, a summary of the range of emotions that were experienced along the way. It’s also a reminder of how far Emma has come since her first EP and marks the volume of her artistic and personal growth.
Best Lyric: “But we’re just healing over / We’re getting stronger as we get older”
Overall, we think ‘Magnetised’ is by far the best era of Emma Blackery music. Besides showcasing her maturity and growth as an artist, it marks a shift in direction musically from her previous pop-punk based EPs. It is packed with strong vocals and personal stories that will make you emotionally invested in each track. It features several heavier moments on tracks such as ‘Instead’ and ‘Don’t Come Home’, but they contrast well with the positive introspections in ‘Nothing Without You’ and ‘Human Behaviour’.
The EP as a whole has something nearly everyone can relate to, whether you’re coping with a situation similar to ‘Fixation’ or having to let someone go who you feel ‘Magnetised’ to. Even if you haven’t watched Emma on YouTube, we think this EP is well worth a listen. We can’t wait to see the direction Emma takes with her music in the future!
Magnetised is available now on iTunes, and physical copies can be purchased here. Emma is currently on her headline tour in the UK promoting the EP with support acts Valeras and Rusty Clanton. Tickets are available here.
What are your thoughts on Emma Blackery’s Magnetised EP? What is your favourite track? Let us know your thoughts on Twitter @CelebMix.