Premiere: Merk Debuts New Single, “But She Loves You” | Under The Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
Wednesday, April 21st, 2021  

Premiere: Merk Debuts New Single, “But She Loves You”

Infinite Youth Out April 9 Via Humblebrag Records

Apr 05, 2021 Photography by Lily Paris West
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New Zealand musician, multi-instrumentalist, and producer Merk (a.k.a. Mark Perkins) has returned, following his 2016 debut Swordfish, with a new upcoming record, Infinite Youth. On his sophomore album, Merk embraces a spacious approach, opening up to new sonic depths while maintaining the essential pop elements that run through his music, inspired by ABBA, The Beach Boys, and Japanese City Pop. Merk has already unveiled a handful of singles ahead of the release and he’s now sharing the final single from the album, “But She Loves You,” premiering early with Under the Radar.

“But She Loves You” has been coined by Merk, using a phrase from Brian Wilson, as the ‘pocket symphony’ of the album. With that reference point, it’s no surprise that the song draws inspiration from the artful simplicity and rich orchestration of ‘60s pop ballads. Yet, here Merk largely forgoes sunny California beaches in favor of more nocturnal dancefloors, writing an understated orchestral disco thriller.

The track opens on a gentle piano ballad, colored by Merk’s heartbroken vocals. Slowly the instrumentation expands, joined by feather-light drumming, sweeping orchestration, and a shimmering bass line. Finally, the rhythms shift into a driving dance beat, completing the song’s transformation into a midnight disco hit. It’s the kind of track that fits perfectly as a despondent mood setter or as an irresistible dancefloor filler. Sometimes it could even be both.

Merk says of the track, “‘But She Loves You’ is a cathartic dance song. This is the ‘pocket symphony’ of the album. Its origins lay very much in the 60s pop ballad universe and, after much experimenting, it became the orchestral sad disco song it is now. The song is probably me at my most passionate and dramatic. To me, it has an apocalyptic, mountain falling into the ocean level of heartbreak feelings.”

“I recorded this with my friend Johan, half in Copenhagen and half on a farm in rural New Zealand. My favourite moment in this track would have to be the searing string synths Johan played and the fluke of a bass line that we accidentally made, we had two options and accidentally played them at the same time and fell in love with the weirdness of it. I hope this song provides people with an opportunity to dance away their sorrows.” Check out the song and accompanying visual below, and watch for Infinite Youth, out April 9th on Humblebrag Records.


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