Label: Dirty Hit
Released: 13th November 2020
There’s something about the way Viji perfectly blends a modern grunge vocal with a glittering synth that takes all the grit out but maintains its nonchalant attitude. Remnants of Blink-182 and Avril Lavigne flash to the surface, which she carefully weaves into her own e-girl sensibility to make this EP a 90s trip down memory lane.
The ‘Are You In My Head’ EP opens with ‘Unfair’ of which she explains, “It’s my 90s grunge dreams coming true. The song is about someone I used to work with, who’s had everything handed to them but is without a clue what to do with it. There’s a vulnerability in growing up with wealth but no direction. It’s a song for unlikely outcasts, good or bad.”
The music video plays with those classic 90s tropes of being rebellious and getting busted, but her tone goes deeper, embodying that angsty teen persona with a casual demeanour.
It’s the title-track that packs the biggest punch, moodily uttering “I don’t wanna watch game shows on the fucking couch” before rebuilding to finally admit, “because I like you, and you like me too, so let’s fuck with it”. She’s way too cool for school; Courtney Love would be proud.
The EP ends with a more laidback track, sonically pushing the boundaries of that 90s nostalgia and placing us firmly in the here and now. ‘Drowsy (Lightning)’ is a haunting song echoing throughout to create something ethereal and truly magnetic. This track is a standout in characterising Viji as the grunge granddaughter of easy listening lo-fi – and it’s not ‘just a phase’.