Prior to 2017, unbeknownst to us, we had a particularly gaping hole in our lives, hearts and Spotify Libraries. That gap, which was fittingly set in the shape of a spritely young character from an island off the coast of Tasmania, could be felt filling up quickly when we heard the first frantic, determined chords of 'No Other Way', and thought "ahh yes that's what we've been missing."
Existing somewhere in the abyss between Courtney Barnett, Camp Cope and Dolly Parton is Maddy Jane. Though she actually began releasing songs in 2015, 'No Other Way' slithered its way into your eardrums and the bouncy tendons of your dancing muscles like nothing else, and low and behold, an instant injection of 1. serotonin and 2. the infusing confidence and swagger to think "f*ck you I'm pretty cool", was administered.
Both her 2020 debut album Not All Bad Or Good and most recent release 'You're Not Mine (But I Think You Should Be)' have this quality.
'You're Not Mine (But I Think You Should Be)' is Maddy Jane at her most Maddy Jane-y. The strength of her voice is relaxed into a twangy drawl as she sings with a charming mixture of exceptional confidence and swagger and a dash of youthful hopefulness. As my friend aptly put it, "It's very Dolly Parton if she wasn't jealous of Jolene, and was rather like, 'yeah ok, leave me then I'm better than you.'"
Maddy herself admitted the song was a somewhat accidental venture into self-assertion.
"This song was one of those ones where I wasn’t even sure if I was saying much", she said. "But once it was all done it was suddenly so clearly a song about self-love and that journey towards confidence."
As Maddy's vocals dance sardonically up and down the ample sonic landscape of lush electric guitar and lazily beating percussion she's produced you realise this is the special sort of song you could play for any crowd with few complaints.
Put this naughty one on the jukebox (is that a thing still?) next time you're out for a pub feed with the family and see if your parents can resist a little head nod in their seats.