Like Lana Del Rey but with a dark sneer, fashionista Jesse Jo Stark has finished designing her latest EP “Dandelion,” released via Sugar Jones. Written and produced by Stark, her guitarist Thomas Hunter and Dan Taylor (The Heavy), it begins deceptively ethereal with the title track “Dandelion,” wherein Steve Jones (Sex Pistols) makes an appearance on guitar. It unfolds as a full-throttle fatalistic lament, with Stark singing that it’s “too late to live” and that she’s “too dead to love,” seeking satisfaction in “forbidden pleasure” just to feel again. For someone who looks so young, the words and feelings are very old, and — dare one say — vampire-like. Of the subject, Stark says, “a dandelion flower actually owns two faces. one, a bright light yellow and the other, a delicate white puff, gentle to yer touch. love to me is like a dandelion. each time it fades away… it grows back to dance with you, time after time.” It seems, indeed, as if Stark has lived a few lifetimes, at least where love is concerned.
The rest of the EP descends into a journey winding through dark garage blues (“Love Is in the Air”), then elevates several altitudes above to sweet ’60s rock (“Breakfast With Lou”) and catchy pop (“Chelsea Hotel”). It returns gently to the tarmac to close with a lullaby (“Monster Man”), all with a quirky twist of bitters. With this fine sampling, Stark is poised to release her first full-length album in September.
||| Stream: The entire “Dandelion” EP
||| Also: Watch the video for her 2018 single “Fire of Love”