If there’s anything I learned with certainty from my 8+ years teaching at the middle school and high school level, it’s that being young is a really shit proposition. What little control over your life you actually have is constantly monitored and turnicated by the same powers who already have a seemingly undue amount of influence over what you can do, say, eat, learn, where you can go, who you can hang out with, etc.

Along with the circumscribed and largely static existence is a flood of hormones and emotions in which you are quite literally incapable of dealing with because you never experienced any of them before. You’ve let to learn that the universe is indifferent, so perceived wrongs and slights seem personal and even more cutting. The entirety of your world revolves around your parents/guardians, and while you can quite articulate it, you’ll never escape the visceral feeling that their deficiencies are further hindering your growth and life prospects.

What I’m trying to say is, youth is bleak. Few songs have ever captured the anguish and pure shittiness of growing up the way GIRLI’s “Young” does. It’s like the electro-punk attitude of Charli XCX meets “Don’t Cry Out Loud”. The former’s influence can undeniably be found in the bouncy synths and choral anthemic vocals on the refrain. The angst and bombast feels earned here and you won’t mind as this song gets stuck in your head for weeks.

There isn’t much left to say except that “Most days I think I could go insane,” is the most succinct summation of teenage feelings I’ve ever come across. And no young readers, those feeling don’t go away as you get older, you just get more used to them.



Born Milly Toomey, the London-based singer has been called the Brits answers to Brooke Candy. Along with a pair of EPs, GIRLI has a slew of great singles, the latest of which is “Young”. A debut LP can’t be far off now, but in the meantime she’ll be touring this fall. Dates and venues can be found below, for tickets go here:

SEP  22 MTV Presents Gibraltar Calling 2018; Gibraltar, Gibraltar
SEP 23 MTV Gibraltar Calling 2018; Gibraltar, Gibraltar
OCT 20 The Mash House; Edinburgh, UK
OCT 21 Brudenell Community Room; Leeds, UK
OCT 22 Castle & Falcon; Birmingham, UK
OCT 23 Heaven; London, UK
OCT 25 Patterns; Brighton, UK
OCT 26 The Loft; Southampton, UK
NOV 10 Barrow Library; Barrow-in-Furness, UK


Calvin Paradise is not any one thing. The half-hearted vagabond and forgetful luddite currently resides in Los Angeles and how he spends his time is none of your damned business.