best of 2017: overcoats “young”


Within pop music, it’s becoming more and more rare to find artists that break the mold of traditional genre standards. The separation becomes clear: there are top 40 songs that, while catchy, seem to fit a “formula.” And then there are artists that don’t fit within that sub-genre; they are unique in every way possible. Enter Overcoats, your next girl crush duo.

“My father understands the demons I wrestle with in my daydream // And knows what to say when they are winning // And I go spinning, go mad screaming I don’t need your help // He knows that means I need it bad” 

This is the sole set of lyrics in Overcoats’s opening track, “Father,” of their debut album Young.

The lyrics hit hard, and after its first iteration, you’re immediately introduced to what sets Overcoats apart: they sing the vast majority of their works in harmony with each other. The result is an ethereal, dark, and airy sensation that is hard to come across in pop music.

I had the joy of seeing Overcoats, led by New York natives Hana Elion and JJ Mitchell, at Lincoln Hall in Chicago last November, and from the second the duo stepped on stage, the crowd was captivated by their energy. From the way the two interacted with one another, the crowd, and the overall energy in the room, I was blown away. Their sound is unique, yet comforting: strong electronic influences fill the room and their harmonies break apart the supposed sterility found within sounds produced solely by a computer. It felt as if it was the near perfect balance.

A slight side note, but still related, Lincoln Hall is one of my all-time favorite venues: the capacity is around a solid 500, and I’ve had the pleasure of seeing a wide variety of artists there before they made it big (most recently being Dua Lipa back in March where not even a year later she began selling out arenas in Europe!!!). Something about a small, intimate venue really allows the crowd to become enthralled in someone’s craft, and there was no exception to Overcoats’s performance.

Cathartic, playful (they asked the crowd to yell out some songs and they performed on-the-spot cover versions, notably Umbrella by Rihanna), and honest, Overcoats has become my newest obsession the waves they’re bound to make within the industry are well earned. Good luck girls, we’re rooting for you!

Take a listen to Overcoats’ debut album, Younghere. And watch the video for their latest single “I Don’t Believe In Us” below: