Past, present, future: the three states that all forms of artistry try to understand. Remarkably, L.A based singer-songwriter Michelle Kash somehow manages to encapsulate all three with her unique style. With her lush voice and alt-pop sound that belongs in a smoke-filled back room, it's easy to get lost in the fantasy of a world long gone. But somehow, she manages to stay grounded, finding her place not in the Soundcloud pop machine or the radio queue, but in an undiscovered niche, seemingly reserved only for her. Premiering here today, her sultry cover of Depeche Mode's "Personal Jesus" combines the love of her past with the passion of her present, and finally, the optimism for her future.
“When I sing ‘Personal Jesus,’ I have a vision of a sexual saviour within myself or whom I look for in others,” she notes. “It’s gritty and shadowy like an after-hours party. I hadn’t seen a woman cover the song, which added a different dimension. It paves the way for where I want to go musically.”
If you're a fan of the classic hit by the British trio, then you won't be disappointed by Kash's rendition. Though turned into a grungy composition dripping with desire, it never forgets its origins. Swapping the twangy running melody for a darker bass, it adds some well-earned years to the original song, aging it like a fine wine. Her vocal performance is poised and calculated, taut against the backdrop of a grazing drum kick. With one line, she manages to change the song entirely through simple intonation. Where the original "Reach out and touch faith" line was commanding, hers is sly and playful, the equivalent of "come hither" in not so few words. It's subtle yet empowering, sitting Kash on her newly built throne, where you may approach, but only because that's what she wants.
With only three releases under her belt, there's still an unexplored road ahead of Kash, but it's won't be a solitary one. “When I listen to music, I don’t feel alone anymore,” she leaves off. “I hope listeners walk away with the same feeling. I think it would be amazing if they can connect to what I’m creating.”