Photo by Tonje Thilesen
The latest from Ezra Furman is what we've come to expect from the artist. "Lilac and Black" is a virtually genre-less song that borrows from many different styles while sounding entirely unique. There are elements of folk, pop, dance, punk, and all the multi-hyphenate genres in between, but it doesn't truly sound like any of those. It's a little too electronic to be rock, but too rock to be electronic. Plus, despite being about Furman's "queer girl gang" taking over a city from their oppressors, the song isn't as punk as you'd expect. It starts off quite quiet and contemplative. It does build and get more rock as it goes on, but the music never matches the venom in Furman's voice.
Ezra Furman says of her new song:
“I’ve started to think of us trans women as a kind of secret gang, scattered across the world. Or that we could be that. So I wrote this theme song for us, and gave us some gang colors: lilac and black. Unfortunately, being trans usually comes with some kind of threat to one’s well-being or even one’s life. The hostility toward us right now is intense and the stakes are high. This song is an expression of deep solidarity and willingness to defend our lives.Being an inherently peaceful person, I hate to imagine it, but there are times that violent self-defense, or defense of others, is the moral and necessary path. This song is about being ready for that. It’s also about how being trans so often feels like a war we never asked for. On top of the seemingly endless social stigma and barriers to our general thriving, various governments have now set in motion a concerted movement to virtually outlaw healthy trans existence. Let it be known: we demand safety, resources and dignity, and we are ready to fight for our lives and the lives of others.”
You can watch the video for "Lilac and Black" below. All of Us Flames is due out August 26 on ANTI- Records and Bella Union. The album can be pre-ordered here. For more on Ezra Furman, check out the artist's website. Upcoming tour dates are below the video.