Evoking endless summer days and bubbling warmth, the new single Bonfire out today from singer-songwriter Dahlia Ray blends buoyant indie pop with 90s sentimentality. Driven by optimism and demure effervescence, Bonfire is also accompanied by a nostalgic music video, complete with a key childhood staple: the humble trampoline.
Billowing with soft textures, creamy vocals and propulsive beats, Bonfire is a raw bundle of gloss and confessional lyricism, with Dahlia Ray equally drawing to mind the likes of Amy Shark mixed with soft flourishes from her current musical crushes Sia and Portishead. Teaming up with Michael Paynter and Michael Delorenzis at MSquaredProductions, as well as her uni pal from JMC Academy, Johnny Grant, to ultimately bring Bonfire to life, Dahlia Ray also drew on a deeply personal memory to heighten the track’s rose-coloured sonic soul, as sheexplains, “Bonfire is about being optimistic about the future. It’s also about my mum’s best friend, Jan, who was a friend that became family. Jan is the oldest survivor of cystic fibrosis in Australian history. Her funeral was a big party because she outlived all expectations of her and fought right through until she was 65. Her attitude is something that has inspired us all and inspired this song.”
Fittingly accompanying the bouncy nostalgia lying in wait on Bonfire, the track’s accompanying music video saw Dahlia Ray team up with Aria Award-winning photographer, stylist and videographer She Is Aphrodite, conjuring a sparse yet sharp aesthetic that perfectly echoes Bonfire’s playful charm. “The concept was that I’d be having as much fun as possible while having memory flashbacks which we just used stock films for,” explains Dahlia Ray of the Bonfire music video. “I came up with the stock film idea but that’s definitely all I did. She Is Aphrodite came up with the idea of me jumping up and down on the trampoline. We used her neighbour’s back yard, so nice of him, lol. But yes, She Is Aphrodite is definitely the brains behind this clip.”
A self-confessed geek obsessed with chess as well as sharing and creating good times in a live setting, Dahlia Ray has been steadily weaving sonic magic over the years, culminating in this stunning new addition to kick off the new year. And while the release of Bonfire has been a long time in the making, the track is a seamless extension to Dahlia Ray’s ever-growing repertoire and her ultimate passion for her craft. “I love that music unites people by the shared experience of the songwriter. I’ve sung since I can remember and so it’s always been my only real outlet.”
Bonfire is out now!
DAHLIA RAY – BONFIRE