New Video: Julia Jacklin Shares Anthemic “I Was Neon”

With the release of 2016’s full-length debut, the folky Don’t Let The Kids Win, acclaimed Melbourne-based singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Julia Jacklin has carved out a reputation as a rather direct lyricist, willing to excavate the parameters of intimacy and angry in songs that are simultaneously stark and raw, loose and playful. 2018’s sophomore album Crushing drew the listener in even closer.

Jacklin’s third album PRE PLEASURE is slated for an August 26, 2022 through Polyvinyl Record Co. Conceived upon returning home at the end of an extensive world tour to support Crushing, PRE PLEASURE‘s material was finished in a frantic few months of recording in Montreal with co-producer Marcus Paquin. “The songs on this record took either three years to write or three minutes,” Jacklin says.

Jacklin teamed up with her Canadian touring band, which featured The Weather Station’s Ben Whiteley (bass) and Will Kidman (guitar), Folly and the Hunter’s Laurie Torres (drums) and Adam Kinner (drums), as well as string arrangements by Owen Pallett recorded by a full orchestra in Prague.

“Making a record to me has always just been about the experience, a new experience in a new place with a new person at the desk, taking the plunge and just seeing what happens” Jacklin says of traveling to Canada to work with a new producer for the third time in as many albums. “For the first time I stepped away from the guitar, and wrote a lot of the album on the Roland keyboard in my apartment in Montreal with its inbuilt band tracks. I blu-tacked reams of butcher paper to the walls, covered in lyrics and ideas, praying to the music gods that my brain would arrange everything in time.” 

Conceived upon returning home at the end of a mammoth Crushing world tour, and finished in a frantic few months of recording in Montreal with (“The songs on this record took either three years to write or three minutes”), PRE PLEASURE sees Jacklin expanding beyond her signature sound, while conjuring the ripples and fault lines caused by unreliable communication.

Sonically, PRE PLEASURE reportedly sees Jacklin and her backing band expanding upon the sound that has won her acclaim internationally while the album thematically focuses on the ripples and faultiness caused by unreliable communication.

PRE PLEASURE‘s latest single, the driving “I Was Neon” is features a relentless motorik groove, buzzing guitars, Jacklin’s plaintive delivery and an enormous, arena rock-like hook. And while being an anthemic bit of rock-leaning pop — or pop-leaning rock? — the song is centered around earnest, lived-in lyrics that simultaneously express crippling self-doubt but with a deeply intelligent, almost winking self-awareness of how ridiculous it is.

“I first wrote ‘I Was Neon’ for a band called rattlesnack, a short-lived much loved 2019 side project that I played drums in,” Jacklin explains. “I rewrote it for my album in Montreal, during a time when I was desperately longing for a version of myself that I feared was gone forever. I was thinking of this song when I made the album cover, this song is the album cover really.”  

Directed by Jacklin, the accompanying video for “I Was Neon” was shot in Melbourne and features the acclaimed Aussie singer/songwriter in an elaborate get up — a long dress, gloves, lots of rings and the like while playing guitar in a quirky and cluttered apartment that’s roughly the size of a box, and follows her as she bops around from room to room. We also follow Jacklin as she wanders a suburban, wooded area and swings near a lake. The video is a surreal fever dream in which its protagonist seems to be negotiating between stage presence and her real self.

Jacklin will be embarking on a lengthy international tour to support the new album. The tour includes a September 16, 2022 stop at Brooklyn Steel. Check out the rest of the tour dates below.

US Tour Dates:

08/26 – Stanford, CA @ Frost Amphitheater – Here and There Festival

08/27 – Pasadena, CA @ This Ain’t No Picnic Festival

09/09 – Austin, TX @ Mohawk #

09/10 – Dallas, TX @ The Studio at The Factory #

09/12 – Nashville, TN @ The Basement East #

09/13 – Atlanta, GA @ Terminal West #

09/15 – Washington, DC @ 9:30 Club #

09/16 – Brooklyn, NY @ Brooklyn Steel #

09/17 – Philadelphia, PA @ Underground Arts #

09/18 – Boston, MA @ Paradise Rock Club #

09/20 – Montreal, QC @ Corona Theatre $

09/21 – Toronto, ON @ Phoenix Concert Theatre $

09/22 – Grand Rapids, MI @ Calvin University $

09/23 – Chicago, IL @ Thalia Hall $

09/24 – Minneapolis, MN @ Fine Line $

09/26 – Denver, CO @ Bluebird Theater $

09/27 – Salt Lake City, UT @ Urban Lounge $

09/29 – Vancouver, BC @ Commodore Ballroom $

09/30 – Seattle, WA @ The Crocodile $

10/02 – Portland, OR @ Revolution Hall $

10/04 – San Francisco, CA @ The Fillmore $

10/05 – Solana Beach, CA @ Belly Up Tavern $

10/07 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Fonda Theatre $

10/08 – Phoenix, AZ @ Crescent Ballroom $

# w/ Kara Jackson

$ w/ Katy Kirby

UK & European Tour Dates:

11/03 – Dublin, Ireland @ Vicar Street &

11/05 – Glasgow, Scotland @ SWG3 TV Studio &

11/06 – Manchester, UK @ The Ritz &

11/07 – Birmingham, UK @ The Mill &

11/09 – Bristol, UK @ SWX &

11/10 – Brighton, UK @ Chalk &

11/11 – London, UK @ Roundhouse &

11/13 – Paris, France @ La Maroquinerie &

11/14 – Antwerp, Belgium @ Trix Club &

11/15 – Cologne, Germany @ Club Bahnhof Ehrenfeld &

11/17 – Amsterdam, Netherlands @ Paradiso &

11/18 – Hamburg, Germany @ Knust &

11/20 – Oslo, Norway @ Parkteatret &

11/21 – Stockholm, Sweden @ Slaktkyrkan &

11/22 – Copenhagen, Denmark @ Dr Koncerthuset &

11/24 – Berlin, Germany @ Columbia Theatre &

11/25 – Munich, Germany @ Strom &

11/26 – Zurich, Switzerland @ Plaza &

11/27 – Milan, Italy @ Magnolia &

11/29 – Barcelona, Spain @ Apolo &

11/30 – Madrid, Spain @ SalaMon &

12/01 – Lisbon, Portugal @ Lav &

& w/ Erin Rae