Jules revels in life’s complexity on latest album ‘Familiar Drama’

Jules’ latest album Familiar Drama traces her from triumph to despair, with glimmers of hope to be found even when “everything’s on fire.” 

As the anticipation around her imminent show in Sydney early next month reaches fever pitch (more on that later), we’re taking a look at Jules’ stunning latest album, Familiar Drama.

A sprawling ten-track collection documenting the throes and complexities of grief and nostalgia, the stirring record is carried by the sheer force of Jules’ songwriting. 

Jules album 'Familiar Drama'

Whether she’s “caught in wire” (as on opening track In Your Sky) or trapped in the “haze of the storm” (Behind the Wake), Jules colours her life experiences with a poetic sensibility, bringing intimacy and personality to universal tales of heartbreak and moving on.

While the creativity of Jules’ pen carries much of Familiar Drama, the Sydney singer-songwriter is equally interested in the sounds that score her journey. 

Send Her Off To Paris at once recalls the vocal riffs and ooo-la-la’s of vintage R&b, while the title track offers Jules a much-deserved spotlight for sparse instrumentation and powerhouse balladry.

Jules album 'Familiar Drama'

Elsewhere, there’s a punchiness to Take Me Back To The City, a searing breakup anthem delivered with a sneer, before Summertime Waits for You brings a warm slice of jazz pop. 

The eclectic palette reflects Jules’ meandering lyrical concerns, which trace her from moments of introspection (In Just A Little While) to despair (Heartsick).

The diaristic tone of Familiar Drama reaches its climax on final track Everything’s on Fire, which coasts on sporadic acoustic strums and propulsive percussive flairs. 


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Here, Jules bears witness to the world crumbling around her, but revels in the freedom that comes with chaos. It’s a worthy bookend to Jules’ sonic journey, finding her at a moment of ascendent acceptance, accented by catchy refrains and a folksy feel. 

Through it all, Jules’ commanding presence pulls focus, nowhere more so than on her cover of Christopher Cross’ Sailing.

A fitting anchor for the album, the largely faithful Sailing cover finds Jules at her most reflective, looking back bittersweetly at the tales and tunes that have delivered her here. 

If the tracklist is this good through earphones, you can only imagine its brilliance at a show. Thankfully, Jules — known offstage as Julie Kerr — will perform songs from Familiar Drama at a headline show in Sydney next month.

The singer will take to Church Street Studios in Camperdown on February 2, with a show that promises all the magic she captured in Familiar Drama and then some. 

Find more event and ticketing information for Jules’ Sydney show here, and in the meantime, listen to her latest album Familiar Drama below.