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Jay Som’s Melina Duterte has a knack for finding the most perfect guitar tones and vocal mixes in her music, so it makes sense that she’s been so in demand as a producer and collaborator lately, working with Chastity Belt, Vagabon and SASAMI, amongst others. Her music with Jay Som is so impeccably produced that it seems like everyone in her orbit levels up a bit.
Listening to the newest single from Affectionately, the solo project from Zachary Elsasser, Jay Som’s live drummer, it seems like a bit of Duterte’s production magic has rubbed off on him. Written in 2016, “prettiest part of me,” the lead single from Affectionately’s debut LP (out on June 5 via Fear of Missing Out), simply sounds incredible: The song is woozy, lo-fi bedroom pop at its absolute best. Laid-back and catchy as hell—I dare you not to get the final “you’re the only one I want” refrain suck in your head for days—it simultaneously recalls ’90s Britpop and something much more modern. It was recorded on a phone with a single microphone via Garageband, but you’d never know it. If anything, its rough-around-the-edges vibe gives it even more charm.
“I wrote ‘prettiest part of me’ in 2016 when there was so much crazy stuff happening in the U.S.,” Elsasser says. “It was really a bizarre year to be alive, but I felt inspired by all my friends and loved ones because they were really a glimmering light in my life when everything seemed bleak. The song is inspired by my mom and my friends that I really cherish. It’s about self-accountability because it’s important to let your loved ones know you love them and that in return they can be honest with you.”
Listen to “prettiest part of me” below. Preorder i spend most of my time in my room here.