New Music to Know: Zella Day and the Return of the ’70s Rock Goddess

Zella Day is not what she seems. The emerging singer-songwriter tries on many different hats throughout her debut album, Kicker, far too wily to get comfortable with any one sound quite yet.

Kicker opens with “Jameson,” a sparse, acoustic ballad with distinct country undertones that captures the vibe of her tiny hometown of Pinetop, Arizona, where she grew up amidst wide open spaces and playing in her grandmother’s coffee shop.

By contrast, the album also features singles like “Hypnotic,” a dense, heavily electronic production with a subtle hip-hop beat that wouldn’t sound out of place on a pop radio playlist.

“The record fluctuates between light and dark. In my head, there’s two sides to the album,” says Day during a phone interview with “There’s the side of me that was just moving to L.A. and I was seeing the city with new eyes and I was so optimistic and everything was beautiful and shiny. There’s a half of the record that was written at that time, and I think you can hear that.”

Read more about Zella Day’s plan for pop domination on


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