Mia Joy, who has already seen cosigns from musical peers such as Sharon Van Etten (“I can’t wait to hear more”), is sharing her new single “Freak” today with a beautiful animated video. On the new track Mia Joy cuts through what is, ostensibly, a melancholic breakup song delving into the toxic aspects of attachment and imbues it with a sense of perseverance, self-reliance and reclamation of the self in an astoundingly effortless way. “Freak” also has a tongue in cheek reference to the iconic Korn song, with Mia explaining;
“I loved the imagery of that phrase, a freak on a leash as in feeling tied in a relationship you know is toxic but feeling bound to them, thus making you crazy or a “freak”. Once off the leash, the pain that was holding onto you, you can finally find your own way. I wanted to end it with a sense of reclaiming identity and independence and breaking free from the symbolic leash.”
Mia Joy announced her debut album, Spirit Tamer, which will be released on Fire Talk on May 7th, with the single “See Us”. On “See Us” Rocha sings about a burgeoning relationship, with a gauzy and delicate chimes intro and entrancing guitar strums, bringing to the surface those initial sentiments of hope. “”See Us” was the last song I wrote on the record, back in January of 2020” Mia says, “I had fallen in love again and felt like I could see a promising future with plenty of opportunities. Filled with optimism of love and expansion that we could better our lives. Ironically, the pandemic hit two months later, that relationship ended and now this is a very beautiful bittersweet reminder that this hope can still exist for us someday.” The music video for “See Us” was created by Everybody’s Baby (Beach Bunny, Gia Margaret) and stars Mia Joy on her way to play a gig in the park to an audience of two (puppets).
Mia Joy previously released album cut “Haha”, a darkly humorous take on Mia’s struggles with suicidal ideation and a sonic encapsulation of her personal coping mechanisms and processes. The song focuses on the idea that mortality is a constant anxiety, but it doesn’t always need to be and that acceptance of our fleeting existence is something that can be fun, and funny, if looked at in just the right light.
Mia Joy’s brand of ethereal pop is equally indebted to 90s R&B Icons such as Sade and Selena as to the ambient compositions of Grouper. Intricate layers form an atmospheric spell around Joy’s music. Her insistent willingness to be vulnerable strikingly shines through each track, revealing even deeper depths through repeated listens. Her honesty and passion, for music, for life, for survival, are at the heart of her incredible debut.
Mia Joy is composed of lead singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Mia Rocha, Joseph Farago on keys and Emerson Hunton on percussion. Spirit Tamer was recorded at Pallet Sound studios in Chicago by Michael Mac and co-produced with Rocha.