Melbourne-based pop singer Sir Jude has just released her debut album, Revelations. She’s already made a bit of a splash in the music world with her 2020 EP Dreamlands, which featured the fantastic single “What the Hell Have You Done.” Now, she’s back with this inventive dark pop collection.
Revelations opens with its title track – a driving, haunting piece. It’s the kind of song you expect to hear in the trailer for a new action television show – the heroine in slo-mo, wearing a red cocktail dress and running from an explosion as flashbacks of her regrets are intercut to the beat. In fact, just about every track can be put into a soundtrack for a spy flick or over a sleek and exciting car commercial.
There’s a wide range of pop influences on this record. “Freakshow” and “Madonna” have an early Lady Gaga feel to them, with themes of sexuality and femininity layered with production reminiscent of The Fame era. The darker, more brooding tracks like “Revelations” and “Preach” have dashes of Sevdaliza and St. Vincent. Dig into her sound even deeper and you hear subtle notes of 70s pop blended in with the pulsating electronica.
The production on the album is fantastic, providing a bedrock of bouncy yet sinister that complements Sir Jude’s sultry vocals. “Preach” is a stand-out here, with its dingy mechanical opening giving way to a drum n bass beat. Once Sir Jude chimes in, the aggressive production eases back, letting her emotional delivery take center stage. The music is at its best when it’s leaning into that apocalyptic, seductive tone like this. However, there are some softer tracks here that show Sir Jude’s range, like the lowkey “MAMMA.”
The final three tracks are actually two shorter ones (one just under a minute and the other only thirty seconds) and the more standard-length “Twenty Four Seven.” “A Message From Rosa” is a brief spoken word intermission from Sir Jude’s grandmother, while “Fine” is a heartfelt mini-outro that dwells on love and heartbreak. The choice to include these bite-sized tracks is really cool – but there are no other tracks like them, which makes the final stretch feel a bit abrupt. It would have been nice to have a few more experimental intermissions sprinkled throughout the album – they made Revelations feel more personal and intimate.
If there’s a complaint to be had here, it’s the short length. The album is just under 25 minutes and leaves you wanting more. Ultimately, Revelations is merely a preview of what’s to come from Sir Jude. Here, she’s starting to experiment with her film noir pop sounds and grungy electronic beats, but there’s still much more to explore. Her debut album is a tantalizing sampler of her talents, for sure, but you can tell that this is only the beginning for the talented artist.