Track Review: Kathleen // Foxes

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Southampton-native Louisa Rose Allen, known by her stage name Foxes, is back with new single ‘Kathleen’. Foxes has been performing her expressive and powerful vocals since 2012, when she featured in the Zedd song ‘Gravity’, which earned a Grammy Award. Subsequently, she has released two albums entitled All I Need and Glorious, both of which feature high charting singles, like ‘Body Talk’, ‘Youth’ and ‘Let Go For Tonight’. 

Now, after a few years break, Foxes has released various new singles, leading up to the announcement of the newest one ‘Kathleen’ on 17 March. She also announced the release date for a new EP, featuring all of the latest singles and additional tracks, called Friends In The Corner EP, which will be out on 1 April, and a new album to be released later on in the year.

‘Kathleen’ is a gorgeous song. It is a beautiful ode to Allen’s grandmother Kathleen, as she explains on her Instagram, saying: “It was written about my grandma, Kathleen, who has always given really good advice so on one visit I thought, ‘why am I not recording this?’”

The track begins with a soft but strong piano intro and a faint clap in the background, before Allen’s controlled but emotional vocals come through. The layers of sound slowly build up until the pre-chorus, where Foxes shows her range of vocals, from controlled low notes to powerful high notes. The chorus follows a familiar catchy and repetitive tune, which we have experienced in her other hit singles. After this build up from the chorus, the second verse follows the pattern of the first but with the additions of more instruments for a more rounded sound. The post-chorus is like a personal message from the singer to her grandmother Kathleen, which her grandmother then seems to respond too, through the addition of spoken word from Kathleen.

The lyrics are not only poignant because of the granddaughter-grandmother relationship that is its focus, but also because they could be a reminder to all of us that we will get through the pandemic and see our own grandparents again soon. The chorus, in particular, with memorable lyrics of “Just go, be slow and you’ll figure it out”, is a mantra we all should follow in these times of COVID-19.

The words of wisdom from Kathleen shared beautifully with us through Foxes’ song are not only sentimental and meaningful to the artist herself, but also to us: her listeners. Its uplifting melody and impactful lyrics make it a powerful single.

Words by Megan Gaen


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