Eccentric, unapologetic art-pop connoisseur Montana Sharp has released her debut EP, Blood Moon which includes the breath taking single Way Of The Whiffler, a clever exploration of the Old English word whiffler as it pertains to the confusion and ever-changing opinions of youth. This highly trained, highly skilled ‘musician’s musician’ marries complex, classical chord structures and motifs with modern, innovative pop song writing conventions – and audiences can’t get enough. Montana goes through her top 5 songs that inspired the EP.
Everybody Wants To Rule The World – Lorde’s version (influenced Way of the Whiffler)
We’re all familiar with the original, but I’m so drawn to Lorde’s take on this. From it’s eerie opening, to the delicious slow build from the second chorus onwards, this song screams dark and mysterious vibes with suspense that feels like pulling taffy – that’s exactly the vibe I went for with Whiffler. It’s dramatic for no reason (I mean, probably because it was arranged for the Hunger Games soundtrack), and that really inspired me to pull out all the stops when it came to producing this track. Give it a listen, and also listen to Kanye’s version too!
Gun In My Hand – Dorothy (influenced Power)
If you compare the two songs, the themes are exactly the same even if we have a different way of expressing it. It’s about questioning why relationships trigger sabotaging behaviours as if it’s completely outside of one’s own control. Dorothy questions ‘Why did love put a Gun in my hand’, while I question “why goodbyes are my power”. I was also inspired by the sheer power (haha) of Dorothy’s vocals, they are so feral and fearless in the best of ways. I’ll never be as badass as her though.
Uninvited – Alanis Morissette (influenced Greenhouse)
I can’t tell you how much I love this song. I don’t have enough words. I could write a thesis on this song and the genius of it. Can I just stress that Alanis Morissette wrote a pop song, a POP song, in a flat 9 flat 6 scale – or for those less familiar, the scale probably used for the Prince of Egypt soundtrack. It’s this mesmeric and other-wordly sound that inspired the meditative state I was in when I wrote Greenhouse. Similarly, Alanis’ lyrics talk about keeping the world out, and while mine are more coded, the theme is the same.
Pauvre Coeur – Jillette Johnson (influenced Enough)
This is a very brave and beautiful song; between the melody, the classical Debussy-like accompaniment, and the heartbreakingly honest lyrics. Johnson’s harsh vulnerability against the delicate instrumentals serve to illuminate that the truth is never pretty, even if we dress it up that way. Her bravery gave me the strength I needed to write Enough, the most stripped back and honest song on the whole EP.
Birds Set Free – Sia (influenced Blood Moon)
Sia’s song is a song about freedom and flight. Although her image is of a bird flying, I took this as inspiration for the image I had in my head when writing Blood Moon: of flying through space surrounded by debris. Sia’s music has always been an inspiration for my song writing, particularly in how she utilises suspense and climax in her song structure, which is unusual for top 40 pop music. I hope Blood Moon inspires a similar feelings of hope and desire to persevere, whether you’re a bird set free or a Blood Moon rising.