Amelia Bushell (Grim Streaker and Belle Mare) is one of the more prolific and inventive songwriters of our generation. Her solo moniker Extra Special provides the perfect platform for her to occasionally step outside some of the character identities she’s created for herself in other projects and deliver a more honest and exposed slice of her experience.
The new single is a raw take on processing emotions and the meaning of life in the moments surrounding the wake of a tragedy. Bushell tells us “I wrote ‘I Can’t Stay’ shortly after my roommate passed away in the room next to mine. I spent a lot of time on the other side of that wall trying to process what had happened. All around me, life just seemed to continue on in the same way it always had. How could he have been here and then suddenly…not? It didn’t seem fair that someone so young and so cool, someone with so much potential, could be taken so quickly.”
Produced by Gary Arturrio at Studio G and featuring Louis Cozza on drums, the Brooklyn based Canadian songwriter has a beautiful way with words and melody that’s so uniquely specific (almost jarringly so at times) weaving between metaphor and direct imagery that perfectly construct the world of loss, and loneliness, and confusion.
Speaking about the influence of her roommate, Bushell explained “I desperately wanted something to escape to. Someone to talk to about life and death. And really wanted to get my shit together like they did. Turns out they didn’t have it together at all. I’ve had the space to reflect on that time in my life and I’m grateful to have music as a way of processing life’s hardships.”
This is the second single for Extra Special this year after the earlier release of “Reasons,” which has us really hoping there’s a new record on the way to follow up on 2020’s Lazy About It EP. But for now, spin the single and check out the back catalog of indie-pop tunes everywhere you stream music.