Budding pop talent Salem Ilese celebrates her 22nd birthday with Ben & Jerry, a bop with endless imagination.
North California electro-pop act Salem Ilese will be the first to tell you that “songwriting is a muscle”. To tell an original story, especially of ineluctable heartbreak, you need to be observant and experienced. Fortunately, this isn’t an issue for the 22 year old, whose parents raised her on the best of the best (David Bowie, The Beatles).
Taken under the wing of songwriting royalty Bonnie Hayes, Ilese has returned with yet another single dripping with personality and aching resonance. So go grab a spoon. Let’s indulge.
When we spoke with Ilese last year, we learned that conceptual writing is a favourite style of hers. Today’s concept is Ben & Jerry, in which the artist finds solace in the sweet treat instead of settling for an unsavoury relationship.
“The only guys who treat me right are Ben & Jerry”, she begins, over a synth line inspired by those infamous ice cream truck jingles. The soundscape opens up to a summery rock-pop vibe with punchy electrics, huge vocals, playful bass, and delicious vocoder production.
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This instrumentation is undeniably grabby, but so are Ilese’s witty quips. “You’re the reason I(ce) scream” and “I’m tired of this rocky road” are personal favourites.
For lovers of The 1975 and other idiosyncratic writers, we’d highly recommend adding Ilese to your playlists. Her ability to be heavy with emotion but light in execution ensures that there’ll be plenty more earworms in the future to sink your teeth into.
Listen to Ben & Jerry below: