If you haven’t caught up with the music of Flint Eastwood yet, now would be the time to do so. This musical project, spearheaded by Detroit-based singer/songwriter Jax Anderson, in collaboration with her brother Seth, aka Syblyng, has been slowly but surely amassing recognition over the years, and is currently in the middle of a surge in popularity following the success it gained last year.
The accomplishments Flint Eastwood achieved in 2017 were a long time coming, the history of the band dating back to the beginning of the decade. This was largely due to the breakout single ‘Queen’, which was used during ESPN’s Wimbledon coverage last year and ended up being Triple J’s 10th most played song of 2017. Anderson went on to support the likes of Foster the People and Phantogram on their respective tours, as well as appear at numerous festivals such as Falls and Lollapalooza.
Following the release of her EP ‘Broke Royalty’, which featured ‘Queen’, last year, Anderson just dropped a new single entitled ‘Real Love’. A celebration of LGBTQ+ pride, the song sees Jax directly address her own personal identity and orientation for the first time.
‘Real Love’ stems from a long-term tumultuous relationship with Christianity, which culminated recently when Jax’s childhood pastor received an award for a workshop targeted towards 11-13 year-old females questioning their sexuality, with intentions practically identical to that of gay conversion therapy. Before that, Anderson shed her religious affiliation after being hired as a videographer/content creator by her childhood church, only to be asked to cover a story about a young woman the church “saved” from homosexuality, and, later, the offer of a record deal from a well-known Christian label was withdrawn after those in charge learned of Anderson’s “alternative lifestyle”.
Describing the song on her SoundCloud page, Jax described how she was made to feel “lonely, broken, and ashamed about who I am” as a youth. She states that she wrote the song “to celebrate that fact that I’ve found the things they told me I’d never find– love, joy, peace, self-worth, happiness. I wrote it because no one should feel as lonely & broken as I was convinced to feel. You are worthy of the most spectacular love, & you will find it being exactly who you are.”
The single is an infectious and anthemic dance-pop tune loaded with gospel-style backing vocals and syncopated piano chords, giving it a definite 90’s-throwback flair. Despite the dark times that inspired it, ‘Real Love’ is exuberant and joyful in its delivery, with pure passion dripping from Anderson’s vocals. Lyrically, it lives up to its first line: “Can I be honest for a minute?” Jax discusses finding “life outside rejection”, “love when I thought I couldn’t”, “faith no bells and whistles”, amongst other things. Anderson’s personal story of moving beyond the condemnation and hatred that plagued her past to gain confidence and true happiness that is put on display in the song is nothing short of empowering.
Over the past year, Flint Eastwood has become one of the most exciting names in alternative pop music. With plenty more rousing songs, aside from those mentioned in this article, in her discography already, and, surely, more on the way, you should be on the look out for Anderson’s next musical offerings.
Listen to ‘Real Love’ below…