January 30, 2014

Banks-Brain-537x350Jordan Pedersen once played guitar on a cover of “You’re So Vain” for a cute girl’s vocal recital.

In which Jillian Banks plays alt scene Freddie Gibbs, calling out a fake thug for “wearing what you think is hard.”

The LA weird R&B diva has a knack for the casually devastating: “everything’s a game/always trying to calculate/trying to look smart but not too smart.” Nastiest of all, the title of the track refers to what Banks’ quarry shouldn’t hurt from struggling too hard. Woof. Banks has some meanness in her.

Banks evinces a keen eye for discerning why irony is corrosive, why painstakingly calculating your every gesture eats away at your soul and also makes girls not want to make out with you.

On last years London and “Warm Water,” Banks went inward brilliantly and empathetically, but here she makes the personal universal, conscripting fellow Angeleno Shlohmo to turn a bedroom track into an arena ballad.

Call it the subterranean “Dancing on my Own,” the modern “You’re So Vain,” or just the next thing you’ll scream cathartically on your next late-night drive. In any event, don’t call Banks a flash in the pan. She’s got your number, and she’s not going away anytime soon.