Written by Jourdan Russell
With her debut album Needle Paw just around the corner, Hiatus Kaiyote’s frontwoman Nai Palm has been steadily releasing solid singles to wet our appetites. Her latest offering, Crossfire/So Into You manages to distill the essentials of the Hiatus Kaiyote sound – strong and punchy percussion and strikingly beautiful vocal harmonies – into a simple yet infectious ballad about love that swells as Nai Palm’s stacked harmonies reach their peaks and drop abruptly to their troughs.
But where the song’s first half is an “I can’t believe it’s not Hiatus Kaiyote” piece that sounds like it was made during the Choose Your Weapon sessions, the second half is a wonderful and unexpected turn; in an instant, the polyrhythmic ballad halts, refocusing onto an intimate cover of SWV’s iconic track So Into You. Nai Palm’s voice has always lent itself to R’n’B well with tracks like Nakamarra, and in this cover her voice is bare and without frills, allowing the sugary sweet emotion to flow throughout the admittedly brief second half of the track.
If she somehow didn’t have your attention before, Nai Palm for sure has it now. Needle Paw will be out October 20th.
Listen on Spotify, Apple Music or buy on iTunes and on CD (vinyls will be released in January)