Glam-pop hero Marion Belle has been turning emotional gore into musical glitter for the better part of a decade, first with the skinny-jeaned swagger of Bowery Beasts and then in the project he helmed for two albums (one of which is now consigned to invisibility on the usual streaming channels), Fatal Jamz.
After last year’s release of “Melt,” the stellar collaborative EP he made with the late Sam Mehran of Test Icicles, Belle has stepped away temporarily the Fatal Jamz moniker to release music under his own name. “Soundcheck” is his first single.
The song has its roots in something that happened when Fatal Jamz was on tour supporting Weyes Blood (Belle rescues Natalie Mering’s mermaid in the video for “7 Words,” if you remember). Arching, dramatic and tinted by wistfulness, “Soundcheck” (out Friday) is one of those songs that takes a seemingly small moment and turns it into a life lesson. It’s like looking into a mirror and seeing nothing but memories.
Says Belle, rather cryptically: “The song refers to specific encounters I experienced during the Weyes Blood tour, but also to moments I’ve experienced over the years as a performer where music has brought me into confrontation with my past.”
The tune was made with songwriter and production whiz Bram Inscore, with whom he connected via Terrible Records. Working at Inscore’s Highland Park studio, the pair “bonded immediately,” Belle says, “and wrote the song in a day over an acoustic guitar riff.” There’s more to come.
||| Stream: “Soundcheck”