The 'Born Loser' EP by YNES

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The 'Born Loser' EP by YNES

Review

Despite the official date for festive gifting being still a few weeks off, YNES' many fans will feel more than blessed this winter morning with the long awaited release of her ‘Born Loser' EP.

It's a great value for money five track release, featuring three singles which we have reviewed in the magazine already (and I stand by our praise): "I Wanna Be Overrated", "Fake What Your Mama Gave Ya" and "The Daily Male" plus newbies "Dizzy" and "Veneer".

YNES clings defiantly to her outsider status & as a vantage point for songwriting, I think that helps her write her highly acerbic & accurate skewering: her perspective from the exterior of what she sees as complacent and hypocritical society makes her music the force for truth that it is. However is she a ‘Born Loser' as such? Well at the end of a year in which Billy Bragg invited her to play his Left Field Stage at Glastonbury & the Joe Strummer Foundation made her their featured artist, I think the signs of artistic success are unmistakable. Factor in the clear popular response to what she's doing, let alone the critical acclaim from this magazine and many others & loser she is not. Hopefully she also feels that God has left off using her as a punching bag. She's one of those artists whom the buzz is surrounding: I was only yesterday discussing her with a prominent figure on the local music scene: without really even touching on the EP itself. I have a feeling that YNEs will kick on in 2023 from this very strong year & reach new heights in many ways.

As to the songs on the EP which we've not yet told you about before, "Dizzy"  is an interesting trip for YNES into the dating scene and as you might expect, it's no anodyne song but full of awkwardness, insecurities & under confidence. She (probably) wants to sustain this relationship and quite enjoys aspects of it while both keeping an eye on an exit strategy and doubting her own capacity to inhabit the world the other person lives in.

"Veneer" is a gentler sounding song (it has pads of keyboards instead of the spiky trademark guitar) but YNES being YNES, that's just her using the strategy of setting words & music at variance occasionally for particular effect: the lyrics are spat at a rate which at times threaten to overtake the music: another great signature move of hers.  They concern "misery" to some extent but also the hypocrisy referred to earlier and the corrosive effects of living the lie. (I've added this one to the current "Hot Music Live Presents" Spotify playlist). Credit once again to John Rivers at Woodbine for production.

YNES is known so far for her singles & to be honest, I think that's been helpful. She is such a strong & idiosyncratic writer that not only are individual tracks demanding of their own precise attention, but whole collections of YNES' work is actually very strong medicine to take in one sitting: an album would certainly leave you reeling if consumed at a single sitting.

This is another artist whom Coventry & Warwickshire can be very proud of & one already well onto the national radar (given the support she's been getting which I mentioned above, I'd guess her international profile must be rising too).

You can catch YNES on her ‘Born Loser' tour at The Sunflower Lounge in Birmingham on 14th December  and The Peer Hat in Manchester on 19th December and then at The Tin on 23rd December with guest Duke Keats for BBC Introducing in Coventry & Warwickshire. See you there.

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