Alt-pop songstress Kaya Stewart delivers new powerful album ‘If Things Go South’ via Bay Street Records
The 10-song album chronicles Kaya’s self-actualization as an artist along with the aches and pains of growing up, doubt, heartbreak and mental health. Under the influence of Alanis Morissette and Debbie Harry, she uncorked a hypnotic and hard-hitting sound of her own with full creative control and complete independence.
Over at Teen Vogue, Kaitlyn McNab declared it the “in-your-face ‘Honey’” while adding “the thumping anthem should be done justice by being blasted at full volume — that way, you’re able to simultaneously headbang and take in all of Kaya’s full-bodied vocals.”
The album is tied together with her powerful, unique vocals utilizing pop-punk attitude, intimate Americana-tinged storytelling, and infectious danceable grooves. If Things Go South (co-written and co-produced with her father, Dave Stewart) is Kaya at her most authentic, expressive self. The album is set to have a candid companion performance film — self-narrated — detailing her most personal thoughts (release details TBA).
In the midst of the global pandemic, she was diagnosed with obsessive compulsive disorder which was the catalyst to write the collection of songs that make up If Things Go South.
She says: “It was the weirdest time of my life, because I had this life-changing diagnosis that explained so much for me,” “I wasn’t planning on making an album; I was actually thinking of taking a break for a little while. I called my dad, and he said, ‘Why don’t you just come to Nashville and record a couple of songs?’ By the time I left, we had If Things Go South. I was able to be myself in the studio. The album is the most honest thing I’ve ever done.”
Following her self-titled album, Kaya Stewart (2016), that acquired millions of streams, she then went independent and headed to Nashville to cut the Miss Kaya EP (2020) with producer Jamie Lidell behind-the-board. Earning critical acclaim for this partnership from NPR and more, The FADER hailed the single “California” as “an airy song about the left-coast with Kaya’s powerful voice and a lot of wobbles courtesy of Jamie.”
Tracklisting for If Things Go South:
“If Things Go South”
“Young In New York”
“‘Til I Fixed It”
“3 Is Company”
“Hope You’re Happy”