VIDEO PREMIERE: Annie Hamilton’s ‘My New Tattooed Chameleon’
April 11th 2019
Photo: Michelle Pitiris
With ‘My New Tattooed Chameleon’, Annie Hamilton (ex-Little May) gives us a glimpse at the depth of her songwriting abilities – a second release that’s worlds apart from her first single ‘Fade’, but every bit as masterful. It was premiered on Up For It with Ruby Miles, and you can watch the stunning vid by Sammy Hawker below.
‘My New Tattooed Chameleon’ canvasses the nostalgia of an unfulfilled romance revisited, the expectations that come with the revisiting, and the doubt and anxiety which those expectations engender: It felt all too familiar / You held my ribcage close to you / But I felt like an alien / My new tattooed chameleon.
Hamilton’s flair for gradual layering and soundscape – the structural basis for her first single ‘Fade’ – is on display here again. The mounting intensity of the verse resolves into a sublime lower-register refrain that borrows the effortless 90s swagger of The Breeders or Veruca Salt. The song is built up from a relentless buzzing guitar note that never moves off A-sharp and a brick house of a beat courtesy of Cat Hunter. Around these foundational elements fizzes Hamilton’s overdriven vocals, pristine guitar hooks and synth pads, rendering in sound the sense of nervous expectation evoked by the lyrics.
While on their own the lyrics read as vulnerable (I’ve never felt so unconvincing / With my new tattooed chameleon) the confident delivery and robust melodies make you doubt the completeness of this vulnerability. What we actually see is a nascent strength and confidence, obscured but emerging: Did you realise I could change my skin? / And I know sometimes you think you might still love me / But do you like my new tattooed chameleon?
Maybe this song is Annie Hamilton’s new tattooed chameleon, and in answer to her question: yes, we do like it. Very much.
‘My New Tattooed Chameleon’ is out on Friday 12 April through Inertia Access, and you can catch Annie supporting Sloan Peterson at the Lansdowne 9 May.