Interview: Charlotte Lawrence Bares All in Her Intimate & Breathtaking ‘Charlotte’ EP

CHARLOTTE - Charlotte Lawrence
CHARLOTTE - Charlotte Lawrence
A stunningly evocative and visceral affair, Charlotte Lawrence’s ‘Charlotte’ EP showcases the expansive breadth and intimate depth of her seemingly limitless artistry.
Stream: “Talk You Down” – Charlotte Lawrence

This EP represents who I am and what I’ve gone through over the last few years.

Already an icon in her own right, pop trailblazer Charlotte Lawrence has come into her own with self-assured confidence and vulnerability on her soaring self-titled EP.

A stunningly evocative and visceral 22-minute affair, Charlotte showcases the expansive breadth and intimate depth of Charlotte Lawrence’s seemingly limitless artistry – finding her dwelling in the caverns of the self and rising to breathtaking heights as she bares her soul for all to see, hear, and feel.

CHARLOTTE - Charlotte Lawrence
CHARLOTTE – Charlotte Lawrence
go ahead you can say it’s my fault
it doesn’t really matter at all
ticking time bomb watch it explode
it’s not like we could stop it at all
hold me closer, I’m your virgin
only god can save us now
go ahead you can say it’s my fault
it doesn’t really matter
it’s you
and all the things you do
i know it could be anybody
it should be anybody else
lovin’ you
makes me hate you too
i know it could be anybody
it should be anybody else
but it’s YOOOUUUU
– “You,” Charlotte Lawrence

Released March 5, 2021 via Atlantic Records, the seven-track Charlotte EP is a powerfully personal and thoroughly alluring record from start to finish. Lawrence’s first collection since 2018’s debut EP Young arrives in the wake of a bustling, transformative past three years that have brought the singer/songwriter into the spotlight, where she has remained ever since through a near-constant stream of singles, remixes, collaborations, and more.

Charlotte Lawrence © Dana Trippe
Charlotte Lawrence © Dana Trippe

“I cannot put into words how deeply ecstatic I am to finally release this EP,” Lawrence shared upon her new EP’s release. “It feels very nostalgic as I’ve spent the last two and a half years making Charlotte. This EP is a window into my mind, heart, soul, and all my experiences. If my EP touches at least one person, then I feel like I’ve won.”

Purposefully self-titled, Charlotte represents some of the artist’s most vulnerable and intimate work to date – combining a few of Lawrence’s singles from recent years with a smattering of new tracks that, when put together, make for an engaging, moving journey. Opener “Talk You Down” started the record off with a buoyant upheaval of electro-pop wonder and strikingly fluid, expressive vocals that fly effortlessly over a web of shimmering synths, thumping bass, cool drums, and more. It’s an intoxicating introduction, and it’s so much more than meets the eye:

You’re saying that you kiss me, but you’re talking
Isn’t it ironic?
You’re saying that there’s no way I can stop it
But I gotta drop it, yeah
In this moment
Oh, it’s only in your mind
All I know is
Baby, what’s yours is mine
Irrational fears are calling
Irrational tears are falling
Baby, I swear, I promise
That I will talk you down
Make believe while you’re walking
Making no sense, you’re talking
Baby, I swear I’m on it
That I will talk you down
– “Talk You Down,” Charlotte Lawrence

“When you listen to ‘Talk You Down’ for the first time, you might find yourself lightheartedly dancing along,” writes Atwood Magazine‘s Bethan Harper. “Scratch just below the surface, and you will find a resonant track about anxiety, mental breakdowns, and depression.” She goes on to call the track “the perfect pop song with a twist” – and what a way for Charlotte Lawrence to begin her self-titled record.

Charlotte Lawrence © Dana Trippe
Charlotte Lawrence © Dana Trippe

Anxiety plays a significant role in Lawrence’s written material, but it is far from being the EP’s only subject matter.

Charlotte goes on to reckon in the throes of heartache and romance (“You,” “Heartbreak,” “Sin x Secret”), longing, lust, and self-doubt (“Cowboys”), addiction and dependence (“Rx”), and much more. As the twenty-year-old Lawrence picks apart these matters of her heart one by one, she blends her strong pop sensibilities with an eclectic array of influences – ranging from alternative, to R&B, to folk, and beyond. Every song is not only its own body of lyrical self-expression, but also a world of sound unto itself.

By the time Charlotte concludes with the vengeful and bombastic punk of “Why Do You Love Me” – her standout single from summer 2019 – the artist has already taken us through a litany of vast, raw, and urgent emotions. Bold, brash, and unapologetically hard-hitting, “Why Do You Love Me” may have come as a shock to longtime Charlotte Lawrence fans in 2019 – and indeed, its dramatic staccato instrumentation and Lawrence’s own in-your-face vocal performance continue to deliver an adrenaline rush to the senses. “With “Why Do You Love Me,” Lawrence brings a whole new level of unrestrained frankness to her lyricism, blending a relatable hook with lyricism embedded with intricate details, which bring a refreshing sense of authenticity,” Atwood‘s Luke Pettican wrote in 2019. “Still, part of this song’s brilliance is in its subjectivity, with the anthemic yet refreshingly resonant chorus proving to be both utterly compelling and easily accessible.” Now in its new role as EP finale, this song serves as the perfect conclusion to Charlotte‘s impassioned, honest turbulence.

Hate your friends
I hate your mom and dad
I hope they hate me back
I guess for once, I’m being honest
Got to be a lot that’s wrong with you
To want to be with me
It’s kind of sweet when we
We’re fighting ’til someone’s calling the cops
But you never blame it on me
You’re so annoying
Four in the morning, you’re changing the locks
How could you do this to me? (Oh)
I, I, I only love, love you when you don’t love me
So, why do you, why do you, why do you love me?
I, I, I only need, need you when you don’t need me
So, why do you, why do you, why do you love me?

Not only is this pop music at its finest, but this is also Charlotte Lawrence at her finest hour.

Lawrence dove into her eponymous EP with Atwood Magazine, sharing some of the stories and inspirations that guided her record from conception to completion. Listen to Charlotte out now, and go behind-the-scenes with one of pop music’s most exciting trailblazers in our interview below!

With this EP, I feel like I was finally able to tune into my love for acoustic folky artists, rock artists, pop artists, everything. I finally feel like I connected my inspirations and love for music with my own music.

:: stream/purchase CHARLOTTE here ::
Stream: ‘Charlotte’ – Charlotte Lawrence



CHARLOTTE - Charlotte Lawrence

Atwood Magazine: Charlotte, thanks for your time! Can you share a little about the story behind this EP?

Charlotte Lawrence: I’m someone who writes my truth in every song I make. Whether it be an emotion I’m feeling at the time, or an experience I had, or trauma, or whatever it may be, I turn my own stories into lyrics.

What inspired you to self-title this record?

Charlotte Lawrence: I’ve made this EP over the last 2 1/2 years of my life, so this EP represents who I am and what I’ve gone through over the last few years.

Could you describe this collection in three words?

Charlotte Lawrence: 1. Fuck 2. Ing 3. Awesome

What was your vision going into this record? Did that change over the course of recording this?

Charlotte Lawrence: I just wrote and wrote and wrote til I felt like I told my story.

You've often been described as one of the artists at the precipice of pop - someone pushing the genre forward. What do you look for in your music, and how do you approach your work in terms of style and sound?

Charlotte Lawrence: Oh why thank you.  I don’t know if I could categorize my sound into one genre or style. I love so many types of music, and I love making all types of music whether it be pop or folk or rock or a sad ballad… I’d say my specific style and sound comes from the lyrics and melodies I write. Then we build the music around it. Match the emotion.

Charlotte Lawrence © Dana Trippe
Charlotte Lawrence © Dana Trippe

How do you feel Charlotte reintroduces you in 2021 and captures your artistry at this moment in time?

Charlotte Lawrence: Everybody grows. Everybody evolves, learns, experiences. Everybody changes. If I’m growing and learning and evolving as a human, my music is going to do the same with me. With this EP, I feel like I was finally able to tune into my love for acoustic folky artists, rock artists, pop artists, everything. I finally feel like I connected my inspirations and love for music with my own music.

“Talk You Down” is such a striking song; what inspired you to open the EP with it?

Charlotte Lawrence: I thought it was a great introduction into my EP as it’s fun and you can dance to it and laugh to it, but if you listen to the lyrics they’re about anxiety, portraying a sort of realness and vulnerability.

I love the tenderness and ethereality of “You” (and nice Elton John reference). Can you talk about the effort that goes into the falsetto vocal top-line you sing around midway through? Does that require weeks of practice, or does it come naturally at this point?

Charlotte Lawrence: Thank you! Forever love Elton, my king, and yes I’ve always had a very high register since I’ve been little! I never had to work on that. I was always harmonizing in Alvin and the Chipmunks level notes since I’ve been a kid.

wakin’ up still wearin’ my clothes
you take a little piece of me home
when your mom says where’d you get those
just laugh and say you don’t wanna know
hold me closer
tiny dancer
only god can save us now
go to bed still wearin’ your clothes
pretend it doesn’t matter

Charlotte seems to really showcase the balladry side of your musicianship. What do you think it was about the time in which this record was made, that brought that softer side out of you?

Charlotte Lawrence: I don’t think the softer side of my music was brought out of me, it’s always been there, I just feel comfortable and ready and excited to share it with the world! In reality, my favorite songs are slow songs. It’s all I listen to. So I’m going to start showing that and releasing my favorite songs of mine which are ballads.

The arranging for these songs seems to flex between electro pop, indie, and straight trap (songs like “Slow Motion” really bring out the latter). What was your thought process for this record’s instrumentation? “Cowboys” is a particularly ethereal, stirring moment of wonder. How did this song come to be?

Charlotte Lawrence: Ali Tamposi is one of the best writers I have ever worked with, she is talented beyond human measures, questionably an alien, and we came up with a cool metaphor based off of a relationship I was in at the time. We turned my story of this person not giving me any love or attention or time into an old school western Tarantino movie vibes song. If that makes any sense. And then Andrew Watt and Happy Perez came in and added the cooooolest sounds and  instruments and blew all of our minds, geniuses.

Charlotte Lawrence © Dana Trippe
Charlotte Lawrence © Dana Trippe

“Rx” offers a powerful statement on prescriptions and drugs… Can you talk about the inspiration behind this song and the message you were trying to convey?

Charlotte Lawrence: I think everyone experiences dependency in one way or another, whether it be codependency in a relationship, addiction to drugs, alcohol, whatever it may be. That’s why if I titled the song “our exes” all the lyrics would make sense. I can feel dependent on a substance or a human.

I taste your love dissolve under my tongue
You calm an anxious day like no one does
This ain’t a solution, it’s only a fix, baby I know
Wake up tomorrow and we feel like shit, but baby let’s go
I have been locked up so long, these bars feel like home
We only want our exes
When we get depressive
I’m getting self destructive
It’s getting pretty bad
We only want our exes
When our lives are messes
My friends say it’s еxcessive
And I should put you back
This heavy-wеighted love
Heavy-weighted love
We only want our exes
When we get depressive
So maybe I’ll just save you for a day
When I’m really fucking sad

Do you have any definitive favorites or personal highlights off this record?

Charlotte Lawrence: Changes every week!

What do you hope listeners take away from Charlotte? What have you taken away from creating it and now putting it out?

Charlotte Lawrence: I hope they can see me for me!! And connect with me as I hope to connect with them. ️

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:: stream/purchase CHARLOTTE here ::

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Stream: “Talk You Down” – Charlotte Lawrence

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CHARLOTTE - Charlotte Lawrence

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? © Dana Trippe 

:: Stream Charlotte Lawrence ::

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