Alice Skye knows regional Australia can let loose. “Country people go hard for sure,” she tells marie claire with a laugh. “Being from a country town, I understand that.”
Having grown up in the Grampians town of Horsham in Victoria, the Wergaia/Wemba Wemba singer-songwriter knew what to expect when she returned there earlier this year for the Small Town Big Sound tour with Amyl and the Sniffers and Harmony Byrne. “It was really one of the best tours I’ve ever been on,” she reflects. “[The crowds] were just all in, regardless. Somebody came up and said, “I don’t really like alternative music but you were beautiful.” And I was just like, “Oh my God. I love it.’”
It only takes one listen of an Alice Skye track to understand what that person was talking about. After releasing her 2018 debut, Friends with Feelings, she’s become one of Australia’s most beloved indie acts, renowned for music that’s intimate and introspective.
That talent has even won her recognition by the likes of Phoebe Bridgers, who praised Skye’s music in an interview. “That was huge,” Skye says, explaining that Bridges is one of her biggest inspirations, both musically and personally. “I read her talk about being pushed in the category of writing sad songs and being a sad person, when it’s much more than that. We experience all of those funny, silly feelings, too. I like the multifaceted way she makes music.”
With her latest album, I Feel Better But I Don’t Feel Good, Skye has crafted a record that demonstrates her innate ability to carefully canvas the full spectrum of those emotions and distil them into songs that might punch you in the gut but, yes, make you feel a little better. “I’m happy for people to take whatever meaning they want of the songs. That’s my favourite thing about music.”
I Feel Better But I Don’t Feel Good is out now.
This story originally appeared in the September issue of marie claire Australia, out now.