words by tom johnson
photography by edru yildiz
There’s a palpable sense of prowess to “Warrior”, the latest song to be released from Air Waves’ forthcoming new record, even before you dig in to the context behind the work. A wonderfully propulsive pop song, which recalls the likes of Lower Dens, Broadcast too, perhaps, the new cut is a gleaming introduction, the powerful title-track to what is a mightily personal body of work; a record which traces Nicole Schneit’s own journey as a queer woman, as well as her mother’s recent battle with cancer, which the new song, which is premiering below today, is a direct reaction to.
“The doctor told her she had a fifteen to twenty percent chance,” Schneit says of her Mother’s fight. “Her response was ‘I’m going to get this mother fucker’. So the title ‘Warrior’ and the song are about her. After chemotherapy, surgery, and then more chemotherapy, all the cancer in her body has left and she’s currently in remission. I feel like most of the people in my life, including myself, are warriors and have overcome obstacles that seemed impossible to defeat.”
Featuring a distant Kevin Morby on backing vocals, the new track bounds immediately in to focus, the throbbing nature of the instrumentation an immediate and ever-present feature, driving the whole thing forward and acting as the perfect back-drop for Schneit’s equally alluring voice that barely diverts from its extant positioning. Delivering just a few necessary words as the rest of the composition spirals and swells behind her, the track is a majestic unraveling, a kaleidoscopic marvel that only shows glimpses of the heart which lies behind, while feeling all the more formidable for it.
The full album is released on April 6th, via Western Vinyl. Stream “Warrior” below right now.